• Open Access

Comparative proteomic profiles indicating genetic factors may involve in hepatocellular carcinoma familial aggregation


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Familial aggregation of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), the third leading cause of cancer death worldwide, has shown to be a common phenomenon. We investigated the association between the genetic background and HCC familial aggregation. Serum samples were collected from HCC family members and normal control family members for screening the differentially expressed protein peaks with the approach of surface-enhanced laser desorption ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Potential genetically associated protein peaks were selected and further identified by matrix assisted laser desorption ionization-time of flight mass spectrometry. A panel of six protein peaks (m/z 6432.94, 8478.35, 9381.91, 17284.67, 17418.34, and 18111.04) were speculated to reflect the genetic susceptibility of HCC familial aggregation. Three of them (m/z 6432.94, 8478.35, and 9381.91) were selected to identify as the candidate proteins. Nine identified proteins, including mostly apolipoprotein family (ApoA1, ApoA2, ApoC3, ApoE) and serum amyloid A protein (SAA), were found overexpressed in the multiple HCC cases family members. The comparative proteomic profiles have suggested that genetic factors ought to be taken into account for familial aggregation of HCC.