Journal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology

, Volume 133, Issue 12, pp 929–936 | Cite as

Down-regulation of retinol binding protein 5 is associated with aggressive tumor features in hepatocellular carcinoma

  • Jenny C. Y. Ho
  • Siu Tim CheungEmail author
  • Wing Sem Poon
  • Yuk Ting Lee
  • Irene O. L. Ng
  • Sheung Tat Fan
Original Paper



Acyclic retinoid (ACR) has been shown to be a promising chemopreventive agent for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) after curative resection. The effects of retinoid are mediated by retinol-binding proteins (RBPs) through regulating cell proliferation and differentiation.

Patients and methods

This study investigated the clinical significance of RBP5 in HCC. RBP5 mRNA level was examined by real-time quantitative PCR on 52 matched tumor and adjacent non-tumor liver tissues, and on ten normal livers. Expression of RBP5 protein was examined using Western blotting analysis and immunohistochemistry.


Down-regulation of RBP5 was found in HCC tissues at both mRNA and protein levels. Decreased RBP5 level was closely related to poor differentiation (= 0.02) and large tumor size (= 0.01). Low level of RPB5 was associated with poor overall survival (= 0.02), and was an independent prognostic factor for HCC.


Our study revealed that RBP5 down-regulation in HCC was associated with aggressive tumor features, suggesting an important role of RPB5 in HCC progression.


Cellular retinol binding protein Prognosis 



This study was supported in part by the grants from the Sun Chieh Yeh Research Foundation for Hepatobiliary and Pancreatic Surgery, and Seed Funding Program of the University of Hong Kong.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jenny C. Y. Ho
    • 1
  • Siu Tim Cheung
    • 1
    Email author
  • Wing Sem Poon
    • 1
  • Yuk Ting Lee
    • 1
  • Irene O. L. Ng
    • 2
  • Sheung Tat Fan
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryThe University of Hong KongHong KongChina
  2. 2.Department of PathologyThe University of Hong KongHong KongChina

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