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Low P66shc with High SerpinB3 Levels Favors Necroptosis and Better Survival in Hepatocellular Carcinoma.

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Fasolato, Silvano 
Ruvoletto, Mariagrazia  ORCID logo
Nardo, Giorgia 
Rasola, Andrea 
Sciacovelli, Marco 


Cell proliferation and escape from apoptosis are important pathological features of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), one of the tumors with the highest mortality rate worldwide. The aim of the study was to evaluate the expression of the pro-apoptotic p66shc and the anti-apoptotic SerpinB3 in HCCs in relation to clinical outcome, cell fate and tumor growth. p66shc and SerpinB3 were evaluated in 67 HCC specimens and the results were correlated with overall survival. Proliferation and cell death markers were analyzed in hepatoma cells overexpressing SerpinB3, under different stress conditions. p66shc-/- mice and xenograft models were also used to assess the effects of p66shc and SerpinB3 on tumor growth. In patients with HCC, the best survival was observed in the subgroup with p66shc levels below median values and SerpinB3 levels above median values. Mice p66shc-/- showed high levels of SerpinB3, while in HepG2 cells overexpressing SerpinB3, p66shc expression was trivial. HepG2 overexpressing SerpinB3 cells were more prone to die after oxidizing treatments, such as diamide or high concentration H2O2. These cells injected in nude mice developed tumors five times smaller than those from control HepG2 cells. Tumors originating from HepG2 overexpressing SerpinB3 cells showed decreased activated Caspase-8, with concomitant increase of RIP3K and decreased levels of cleaved RIP3K, typical features of necroptosis. In conclusion, in patients affected by HCC, the pattern characterized by p66shc downregulation and elevated SerpinB3 levels was associated with markedly better survival. This pattern favored necroptosis in experimental high-stress conditions.



animal experimental models, liver cancer, oxidative stress, prognosis

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Biology (Basel)

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National Ministry Education University and Research (RBLA03S4SP_005)