Comprehensive analysis of SPAG1 expression as a prognostic and predictive biomarker in acute myeloid leukemia by integrative bioinformatics and clinical validation

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Abstract

Background: Recently, an increasing number of studies have reported that sperm-associated antigen (SPAG) proteins play crucial roles in solid tumorigenesis, and may serve as potentially helpful biomarkers for cancer diagnosis and prognosis. However, very few studies systematically investigated the expression of SPAG family members and their clinical significance in acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Methods: The expression of SPAGs and their prognostic significance in AML were determined by a systematic analysis on data gathered from public databases, and the results were validated in clinical samples. Results: Using public data, we identified only increased SPAG1 expression negatively associated with survival in AML by Cox regression (P < 0.001) and Kaplan–Meier analysis (P < 0.001). The prognostic value of SPAG1 expression was further confirmed in other independent cohorts. Clinically, higher SPAG1 expression was significantly correlated with white blood cell counts (P = 0.014) and French–American–British (FAB) subtypes (P = 0.024). Moreover, higher SPAG1 expression was more common in + 8 patients (P = 0.034), rarely found with t(8;21) (P = 0.014), and correlated with FLT3 (P < 0.001) and DNMT3A mutations (P = 0.001). Despite these associations, multivariate analysis confirmed the independent prognostic value of SPAG1 expression in AML (P < 0.001). Notably, AML patients with higher SPAG1 expression may benefit from hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT), whereas patients with lower SPAG1 expression appeared less likely to benefit. Finally, we further validated that SPAG1 expression was significantly increased in newly diagnosed AML patients compared with normal controls (P < 0.001) and with AML patients who achieved complete remission (P < 0.001). Additionally, SPAG1 expression could act as a potentially helpful biomarker for the diagnosis and prognosis of AML (P < 0.001 and = 0.034, respectively). Conclusions: Our findings demonstrated that SPAG1 overexpression may serve as an independent prognostic biomarker and may guide the choice between HSCT and chemotherapy in patients with AML.

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Gu, Y., Chu, M. qiang, Xu, Z. jun, Yuan, Q., Zhang, T. juan, Lin, J., & Zhou, J. dong. (2022). Comprehensive analysis of SPAG1 expression as a prognostic and predictive biomarker in acute myeloid leukemia by integrative bioinformatics and clinical validation. BMC Medical Genomics, 15(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12920-022-01193-0

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