Sialidase NEU1 May Serve as a Potential Biomarker of Proliferation, Migration and Prognosis in Melanoma

Qiu Peng, Liang Gao, Hong Bing Cheng, Jin Sheng Wang, Jia Wang


Background: Melanoma is a kind of malignant tumor with high mortality originating from melanocytes. It is urgent to find new molecular biomarkers for prognosis and new treatment methods for melanoma. As an important molecule of sialidase family, neuraminidase-1 (NEU1) has been found to play an important role in regulating the occurrence and progression of tumors, but the role of NEU1 in melanoma is not sure.

Methods: The expression level of NEU1 in melanoma and normal tissues was evaluated by analyzing the expression data from ONCOMINE, UALCAN and GEPIA database. The mutation, copy number alteration and gene correlation of NEU1 in melanoma were evaluated by analyzing the melanoma data from cBioPortal database The protein expression levels of NEU1 were further validated by immunohistochemical (IHC) staining data from The Human Protein Atlas database. The melanoma data in TIMER 2.0 database were used to analyze the correlation between NEU1 expression and immune cell infiltration. The proliferative and migratory abilities of melanoma cells were examined by cell proliferation and migration assay in vitro and nude mice.

Results: We discovered that NEU1 was highly expressed in melanoma samples compared with normal samples. The alteration frequency of NEU1 in melanoma patients reached 18%, and most of them were “mutation” type. The expression of NEU1 was positively correlated with the overall survival of patients with melanoma. The expression of NEU1 was positively correlated with the expression of proliferation marker CDK2 and epithelial-mesenchymal transition marker CD44 and negatively correlated with the expression of apoptosis marker CASP3 and CASP8. Moreover, the expression level of NEU1 was related to the infiltration of immune cells in melanoma. Knockdown of NEU1 attenuated the in vitro proliferative and migratory abilities of melanoma cells, as well as in vivo tumor progression of melanoma cells.

Conclusions: These findings suggest that NEU1 may play a key role in the development of melanoma and may be used as a prognostic target of melanoma.

World J Oncol. 2022;13(4):222-234


NEU1; Melanoma; Invasion; Tumorigenesis; Survival

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