Glioma is a major class of brain tumors, and glioblastoma (GBM) is the most aggressive and malignant type. The nature of tumor invasion makes surgical removal difficult, which results in remote recurrence. The present study focused on glioma invasion and investigated the expression of actin, alpha cardiac muscle 1 (ACTC1), which is 1 of 6 actin families implicated in cell motility.
mRNA expression of ACTC1 expression was analyzed using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR) in 47 formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded glioma tissues that were graded according to WHO criteria: Grade I (n = 4); Grade II (n = 12); Grade III (n = 6); and Grade IV (n = 25). Survival was analyzed using the Kaplan-Meier method. The relationships between ACTC1 expression and clinical features such as radiological findings at the time of diagnosis and recurrence, patient age, Karnofsky Performance Scale status (KPS), and the MIB-1 index were evaluated.
The incidence of ACTC1 expression as a qualitative assessment gradually increased according to WHO grade. The hazard ratio for the median overall survival (mOS) of the patients with ACTC1-positive high-grade gliomas as compared with the ACTC1-negative group was 2.96 (95% CI, 1.03–8.56). The mOS was 6.28 years in the ACTC1-negative group and 1.26 years in the positive group (p = 0.037). In GBM patients, the hazard ratio for mOS in the ACTC1-positive GBMs as compared with the ACTC1-negative group was 2.86 (95% CI 0.97–8.45). mOS was 3.20 years for patients with ACTC1-negative GBMs and 1.08 years for patients with ACTC1-positive GBMs (p = 0.048). By the radiological findings, 42.9% of ACTC1-positive GBM patients demonstrated invasion toward the contralateral cerebral hemisphere at the time of diagnosis, although no invasion was observed in ACTC1-negative GBM patients (p = 0.013). The recurrence rate of GBM was 87.5% in the ACTC1-positive group; in contrast, none of the ACTC1-negative patients demonstrated distant recurrence (0.007). No remarkable relationship was demonstrated among ACTC1 expression and patient age, KPS, and the MIB-1 index.
ACTC1 may serve as a novel independent prognostic and invasion marker in GBM.