Anal squamous cell carcinoma (ASCC) is a rare, potentially fatal malignancy primarily caused by high-risk human papillomaviruses (HPV). The prognostic implication of programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1) expression remains controversial, and glucose transporter 1 (GLUT1) expression has never been examined in ASCC. Covalently closed circular RNAs have recently been shown to be widespread in cancers and are proposed to be biomarkers. We discovered HPV16 expresses a circular E7 RNA (circE7) which has not been assessed as a potential biomarker. A retrospective, translational case series at UT Southwestern was conducted to analyze PD-L1, GLUT1, HPV-ISH, and HPV circE7 in relation to the clinical features and overall survival of patients with ASCC. Twenty-two (22) subjects were included in the study. Improved overall survival was predicted by basaloid histology (p = 0.013), PD-L1 expression (p = 0.08), and HPV-ISH positivity (p < 0.001), but not GLUT1 expression. High levels of circE7 by quantitative RT-PCR predicted improved overall survival in ASCC (p = 0.023) and analysis of The Cancer Genome Atlas sequencing from HPV-positive head and neck cancer and cervical cancer suggested high circE7 marked improved survival in 875 subjects (p = 0.074). While our study suggests that circE7 levels correlate with improved survival in ASCC, larger, prospective studies are necessary to confirm the potential role of circE7 as a biomarker.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||12|
|State||Published - Oct 1 2019|
- Anal squamous cell carcinoma
- Circular RNA
- Human papillomavirus
ASJC Scopus subject areas