Wen-Sheng Liu

Sun Yat-Sen University Cancer Center, Shengcheng, Guangdong, China

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Publications (10)36.14 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Background: Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) commonly infects the general population and has been associated with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC), which has a high incidence in certain regions. This study aimed to address how EBV variations contribute to the risk of NPC. Methods: Using logistic regression analysis and based on the sequence variations at EBV-encoded RPMS1, a multi-stage association study was conducted to identify EBV variations associated with NPC risk. A protein degradation assay was performed to characterize the functional relevance of the RPMS1 variations. Results: Based on EBV-encoded RPMS1 variations, a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the EBV genome (locus 155391: G>A, named G155391A) was associated with NPC in 157 cases and 319 healthy controls from an NPC endemic region in South China [P < 0.001, odds ratio (OR) = 4.47, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.71-7.37]. The results were further validated in three independent cohorts from the NPC endemic region (P < 0.001, OR = 5.20, 95% CI 3.18-8.50 in 168 cases vs. 241 controls, and P < 0.001, OR = 5.27, 95% CI 4.06-6.85 in 726 cases vs. 880 controls) and a non-endemic region (P < 0.001, OR = 7.52, 95% CI 3.69-15.32 in 58 cases vs. 612 controls). The combined analysis in 1109 cases and 2052 controls revealed that the SNP G155391A was strongly associated with NPC (P combined < 0.001, OR = 5.27, 95% CI 4.31-6.44). Moreover, the frequency of the SNP G155391A was associated with NPC incidence but was not associated with the incidences of other EBV-related malignancies. Furthermore, the protein degradation assay showed that this SNP decreased the degradation of the oncogenic RPMS1 protein. Conclusions: Our study identified an EBV variation specifically and significantly associated with a high risk of NPC. These findings provide insights into the pathogenesis of NPC and strategies for prevention.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2015 · Ai zheng = Aizheng = Chinese journal of cancer
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    ABSTRACT: Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is a malignancy with high metastatic potential and loco-regional recurrence. The overall survival of NPC has been limited from further improvement partly due to the lack of effective biomarker for accurate prognosis prediction and precise treatments. Here, in light of the implication of CELF gene family in cancer prognosis, we selected 112 tagging single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) located in six members of the family and tested their associations with the clinical outcomes in a discovery cohort of 717 NPC patients. Survival analyses under multivariate cox proportional hazards model and Kaplan-Meier curve revealed five promising SNPs, which were further validated in another independent sample of 1,520 cases. Combined analysis revealed that SNP rs3740194 in CELF2 was significantly associated with the decreased risk of death with a Hazard ratio (HR) of 0.69 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.58-0.82, codominant model). Moreover, rs3740194 also showed a significant association with superior metastasis-free survival (HR = 0.69, 95% CI = 0.57-0.83, codominant model). Taken together, our findings suggested that genetic variant of rs3740194 in CELF2 gene might be a valuable predictor for NPC prognosis, and potentially useful in the personalized treatment of NPC.
    Preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Oncotarget
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    ABSTRACT: NOP14, which is functionally conserved among eukaryotes, has been implicated in cancer development. Here, we show that NOP14 is poorly expressed in breast cancer cells and invasive breast cancer tissues. In vivo and in vitro studies indicated that NOP14 suppressed the tumorigenesis and metastasis of breast cancer cells. Further investigations revealed that NOP14 enhanced ERα expression and inhibited the Wnt/β-catenin pathway by up-regulating NRIP1 expression. Survival analysis indicated that low NOP14 expression was significantly associated with poor overall survival (P = 0.0006) and disease-free survival (P = 0.0007), suggesting that NOP14 is a potential prognostic factor in breast cancer. Taken together, our findings reveal that NOP14 may suppress breast cancer progression and provide new insights into the development of targeted therapeutic agents for breast cancer.
    Preview · Article · Jul 2015 · Oncotarget
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    ABSTRACT: Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is an endemic neoplasm in southern China. Although NPC sufferers are sensitive to radiotherapy, 20-30% of patients finally progress with recurrence and metastases. Elevated lymphocyte-to-monocyte ratio (LMR) has been reported to be associated with favorable prognosis in some hematology malignancies, but has not been studied in NPC. The aim of this study was to evaluate whether LMR could predict the prognosis of NPC patients. A retrospective cohort of 1,547 non-metastatic NPC patients was recruited between January 2005 and June 2008. The counts for peripheral lymphocyte and monocyte were retrieved, and the LMR was calculated. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis, univariate and multivariate COX proportional hazards analyses were applied to evaluate the associations of LMR with overall survival (OS), disease-free survival (DFS), distant metastasis-free survival (DMFS) and loco-regional recurrence-free survival (LRRFS), respectively. Univariate analysis revealed that higher LMR level (≥5.220) was significantly associated with superior OS, DFS and DMFS (P values <0.001). The higher lymphocyte count (≥2.145×10(9)/L) was significantly associated with better OS (P = 0.002) and DMFS (P = 0.031), respectively, while the lower monocyte count (<0.475×10(9)/L) was associated with better OS (P = 0.012), DFS (P = 0.011) and DMFS (P = 0.003), respectively. Multivariate Cox proportional hazard analysis showed that higher LMR level was a significantly independent predictor for superior OS (hazard ratio or HR = 0.558, 95% confidence interval or 95% CI = 0.417-0.748; P<0.001), DFS (HR = 0.669, 95% CI = 0.535-0.838; P<0.001) and DMFS (HR = 0.543, 95% CI = 0.403-0.732; P<0.001), respectively. The advanced T and N stages were also independent indicators for worse OS, DFS, and DMFS, except that T stage showed borderline statistical significance for DFS (P = 0.053) and DMFS (P = 0.080). The elevated pretreatment peripheral LMR level was a significant favorable factor for NPC prognosis and this easily accessed variable may serve as a potent marker to predict the outcomes of NPC patients.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2013 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: Background Elevated levels of antibodies against antigens in the EpsteinBarr virus (EBV) lytic phase are important predictive markers for nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) risk. Several lifestyle factors, including smoking, have also been associated with NPC risk. We hypothesized that some specific lifestyle factors induce transformation of EBV from the latent to the lytic stage and contribute to NPC occurrence.Methods We conducted a casecontrol study using data from male case patients (n = 1316) and control subjects (n = 1571) living in Guangdong Province, an area in China at high risk for NPC, to study potential NPC risk factors and EBV inducers. Two independent healthy male populations from a second high-risk area (n = 1657) and a low-risk area (n = 1961) were also included in the analysis of potential EBV inducers using logistic regression models. In vitro assays were performed to investigate the effect of cigarette smoke extract on EBV activation in two EBV-positive cell lines. All statistical tests were two-sided.ResultsSmoking was associated with an increased risk of NPC among the Guangdong participants with 2040 and 40 or more pack-years vs never smokers (OR = 1.52, 95% CI = 1.22 to 1.88 and OR = 1.76, 95% CI = 1.34 to 2.32, respectively; Ptrend <. 001). Smoking was the only factor linked to EBV seropositivity among the expanded control group and the independent low-risk population. In vitro experiments showed that cigarette smoke extract promoted EBV replication, induced the expression of the immediate-early transcriptional activators Zta and Rta, and increased transcriptional expression levels of BFRF3 and gp350 in the lytic phase.Conclusion Smoking is not only associated with NPC risk in individuals from China but is also associated with EBV seropositivity in healthy males and is involved in EBV activation.
    No preview · Article · Sep 2012 · Journal of the National Cancer Institute
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate whether alcohol and tea consumption has an etiological association with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) in a high-incident population, a large scale case-control study was conducted. The study included 2846 individuals in Guangdong Province, China, with 1387 newly diagnosed cases of NPC and 1459 frequency-matched controls. Exposure histories of alcohol and tea consumption were obtained via personal interviews. Information regarding socio-demographic characteristics (age, sex, education, dialect and household type), family history of NPC, Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) infection, dietary habits and other potential confounding factors was also studied. An analysis was performed using unconditional logistic regression to calculate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI). The risk of NPC was found to be associated with habitual alcohol consumption and tea consumption. Tea consumption has been associated with a decreased occurrence of NPC (OR = 0.62), while consumption of alcohol was associated with a complex effect. Specifically, moderate consumption of alcohol was associated with decreased risk of NPC, while overuse, especially strong distillate spirits, appeared to be a risk factor.
    No preview · Article · Dec 2010 · Frontiers of Medicine in China
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    ABSTRACT: The dendritic cell-specific intercellular adhesion molecule 3 grabbing non-integrin (DC-SIGN) is an important pathogen recognition receptor of the innate immune system. DC-SIGN promoter variants play important role in the susceptibility to various infectious diseases. Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is a malignancy that is common in southern China and whether DC-SIGN promoter variants have effects on susceptibility to NPC is still unknown. The aim of this study is to ascertain the potential involvement of DC-SIGN promoter single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in NPC susceptibility. We conducted a case control study based on Cantonese population including 444 NPC patients and 464 controls matched on age and sex. The 1041 bp of DC-SIGN promoter region was directly sequenced for all samples. Sequence alignment and SNP search were inspected using DNAStar analysis programs and haplotype frequencies were estimated in Haploview V 4.0. The associations between the SNPs and the risk of NPC were analyzed using chi-square test and non-conditional logistic regression analysis with SPSS 13.0 software. A total of six variants were observed in the DC-SIGN promoter region and DC-SIGN -139 GG and -939 AA were significantly associated with NPC risk with adjusted Odds Ratios (ORs) of 2.10 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.23-3.59; P = 0.006) and 2.52 (1.29-4.93; P = 0.007) respectively and subjects carrying the risk allele DC-SIGN -871 G had 1.47-fold (95% CI = 1.14-1.90) increased risks of developing NPC (P = 0.003). Haplotype analysis revealed that h1 'AAAG' was significantly associated with protection against NPC (OR = 0.69; P = 0.0002) and the association was still significant when using 1000 permutation test runs (P = 0.001). Our study indicated that DC-SIGN promoter variants appear to be involved in the susceptibility to NPC and the detailed mechanism of this effect need further studies.
    Preview · Article · Nov 2010 · BMC Medical Genetics
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    ABSTRACT: Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is rare in most parts of the world but is a common malignancy in southern China, especially in Guangdong. Dietary habit is regarded as an important modifier of NPC risk in several endemic areas and may partially explain the geographic distribution of NPC incidence. In China, rapid economic development during the past few decades has changed the predominant lifestyle and dietary habits of the Chinese considerably, requiring a reassessment of diet and its potential influence on NPC risk in this NPC-endemic area. To evaluate the association between dietary factors and NPC risk in Guangdong, China, a large-scale, hospital-based case-control study was conducted. 1387 eligible cases and 1459 frequency matched controls were recruited. Odds ratios (ORs) and the corresponding 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were estimated using a logistic regression model, adjusting for age, sex, education, dialect, and habitation household type. Observations made include the following: 1) consumption of canton-style salted fish, preserved vegetables and preserved/cured meat were significantly associated with increased risk of NPC, with enhanced odds ratios (OR) of 2.45 (95% CI: 2.03-2.94), 3.17(95% CI: 2.68-3.77) and 2.09 (95% CI: 1.22-3.60) respectively in the highest intake frequency stratum during childhood; 2) consumption of fresh fruit was associated with reduced risk with a dose-dependent relationship (p = 0.001); and 3) consumption of Canton-style herbal tea and herbal slow-cooked soup was associated with decreased risk, with ORs of 0.84 (95% CI: 0.68-1.03) and 0.58 (95% CI: 0.47-0.72) respectively in the highest intake frequency stratum. In multivariate analyses, these associations remained significant. It can be inferred that previously established dietary risk factors in the Cantonese population are still stable and have contributed to the incidence of NPC.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2010 · BMC Cancer
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    ABSTRACT: Family history of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is an established risk factor for this cancer, but the contributions of family history of other types of cancer and its interaction with environmental factors have not been well characterized. A total of 1845 incident cases of NPC and 2275 matched controls from Guangdong, China were included in this study. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) were calculated from logistic regression models adjusted for smoking, consumption of alcohol, salted fish consumption, and demographic factors. A significant association between the risk of NPC and family history of any cancers in first degree relatives was observed, and higher number of affected family member was related to a higher risk (P(trend)<0.01). Family history of NPC was the strongest predictor for NPC (OR: 3.35, 95% CI: 2.46-4.55 for all first degree relatives). The risk of NPC was also positively associated with history of head and neck cancer among parents and lung and breast cancers among siblings. The combination of family history of cancer, especially NPC, and the consumption of salt-preserved fish significantly increased the risk for NPC. These results confirm that the risk for NPC increases with family history of NPC and suggest that lung and breast cancer contribute to risk for NPC. A possible interaction between family history of cancer, especially NPC, and consumption of salt-preserved fish in the development of NPC was also identified.
    No preview · Article · May 2010
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    ABSTRACT: To explore the difference between familial and sporadic nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients on risk factors and family history and provide evidence on genetic counseling and screening strategy for relatives of nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients in Guangdong province. The Cantonese nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients diagnosed in Cancer Center, Sun Yat-sen University from October, 2005 to October, 2007 were recruited as subjects. 1877 patients were collected, including 181 familial nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients and 1696 sporadic nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients. The demographic characteristics, clinical characteristics, risk factors and family history between two groups were compared. Moreover, the distribution of nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients in first-degree relatives and the time interval between proband and the affected first-degree relatives in familial nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients was analyzed. All 9.64% of 1877 nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients had affected relatives in first-degree relatives, among them, 58.49% (124/212) were siblings and 41.51% (88/212) were parents. The mean time interval between siblings and proband were (7.40 +/- 5.41) years while the mean time interval between parents and proband were (15.55 +/- 10.61) years when nasopharyngeal carcinoma occurred, and the difference was statistically significant (t = -5.78, P < 0.01). More than 80% patients of the two group were at advanced stage when they were diagnosed. There were no difference (P values were all > 0.05) both in adulthood and childhood in salted fish (OR = 1.01; 95% CI: 0.59 - 1.75 vs OR = 1.31; 95% CI: 0.92 - 1.86), preserved vegetables (OR = 0.93; 95% CI: 0.58 - 1.49 vs OR = 1.12; 95% CI: 0.80 - 1.57), fermented pastes (OR = 0.37; 95% CI: 0.14 - 1.01 vs OR = 1.61; 95% CI: 0.99 - 2.48), fresh fruits (OR = 0.87; 95% CI: 0.60 - 1.26 vs OR = 0.65; 95% CI: 0.20 - 2.12) and cured meat (OR = 1.26; 95% CI: 0.87 - 1.83 vs OR = 1.28; 95% CI: 0.71 - 2.30) diet. No significant difference (P > 0.05) was obtained on smoking (OR = 0.99; 95% CI: 0.68 - 1.45) and incidence of other cancers in first-degree relatives (OR = 0.85; 95% CI: 0.56 - 1.28) in the two groups. Familial nasopharyngeal carcinoma was 9.64% in the observed subjects. In the familial nasopharyngeal carcinoma, the time interval at diagnosis was shorter between proband and siblings as compared with parents. Most of the patients were at advanced stage. So, we recommend the first-degree relatives of nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients, especially siblings, should be screened regularly according to the specific conditions.
    No preview · Article · Apr 2009 · Zhonghua yu fang yi xue za zhi [Chinese journal of preventive medicine]