Understanding the dynamics of the complex interaction network of cytokines, defined as "cytokinome", can be useful to follow progression and evolution of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) from its early stages as well as to define therapeutic strategies. Recently we have evaluated the cytokinome profile in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) and/or chronic hepatitis C (CHC) infection and/or cirrhosis suggesting specific markers for the different stages of the diseases. Since T2D has been identified as one of the contributory cause of HCC, in this paper we examined the serum levels of cytokines, growth factors, chemokines, as well as of other cancer and diabetes biomarkers in a discovery cohort of patients with T2D, chronic hepatitis C (CHC) and/or CHC-related HCC comparing them with a healthy control group to define a profile of proteins able to characterize these patients, and to recognize the association between diabetes and HCC. The results have evidenced that the serum levels of some proteins are significantly and differently up-regulated in all the patients but they increased still more when HCC develops on the background of T2D. Our results were verified also using a separate validation cohort. Furthermore, significant correlations between clinical and laboratory data characterizing the various stages of this complex disease, have been found. In overall, our results highlighted that a large and simple omics approach, such as that of the cytokinome analysis, supplemented by common biochemical and clinical data, can give a complete picture able to improve the prognosis of the various stages of the disease progression. We have also demonstrated by means of interactomic analysis that our experimental results correlate positively with the general metabolic picture that is emerging in the literature for this complex multifactorial disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)