Background and Aims: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a highly aggressive cancer with few treatment options. Toll-like receptor 3 (TLR3) plays a key role in innate immunity and may affect the development of cancers. This study aimed to investigate the association between TLR3 gene polymorphism and HCV-related hepatocellular carcinoma in Egypt.
Methods: This work was conducted on 70 individuals; fifty HCV cirrhotic patients were included in two groups; with HCC (30 patients) and without HCC (20 patients) compared with a group of 20 apparently healthy controls. All of the studied individuals underwent clinical-laboratory evaluation. TLR3 gene single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) (+1234C/T) was tested by polymerase chain reaction- restriction fragment length polymorphism.
Results: This study reported that the prevalence of TLR3 +1234TT genotype was significantly increased in cirrhotic patients with HCC than without HCC, while it was not detected at all among the controls. When analyzing the TLR3 SNP +1234C/T with different clinical parameters in HCC patients, there was a significant association between+1234C/T SNP; namely TT genotype and each of the hepatic focal lesions᾽ number, size and the patients᾽ higher Okuda and BCLC stages. No association could be detected between TLR3 SNP and the age, sex, Child-Pugh grades, MELD score or AFP of the studied HCC cases.
Conclusion: TLR3 gene SN P +1234C/T could be a novel risk factor for the HCV-related HCC among the Egyptian population.
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