Kinesin family member 20A (KIF20A), which is involved in cytokinesis and intracellular transportation, has been recently reported to be upregulated in several malignancies and may contribute to chemotherapeutic resistance. We examined the distribution and expression of KIF20A in clear-cell carcinoma (CCC) of the ovary to elucidate its clinical signifcance and molecular mechanism. Paraffn sections from ovarian CCC tissues (N=43) were immunostained with KIF20A antibody, and the staining intensities were semi-quantitatively evaluated. Furthermore, we investigated whether silencing of KIF20A contributes to the proliferation-inhibitory potential using CCC cells. During the observational period, 18 patients (41.9%) developed recurrence. The median time to recurrence was 11.5 months. Patients in the high KIF20A expression group showed poorer progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) than those in the low expression group (P=0.0443 and P=0.0478, respectively). In multivariable analyses, KIF20A expression was also a signifcantly independent indicator of PFS and a marginally signifcant indicator of OS [PFS: HR (high vs. low), 5.488; 95% CI, 1.410-24.772 (P=0.0136); OS: HR, 2.835; 95% CI, 0.854-11.035, (P=0.0897)]. In in vitro studies, the ovarian CCC cell proliferation was signifcantly decreased by KIF20A silencing or in the presence of KIF20A inhibitor in CCC cells. Cell cycle G2/M arrest and a higher apoptosis-induced fraction were more frequently observed in si-KIF20A-transfected CCC cells than in the control cells. Although the present study was preliminary, these data indicate the possible involvement of KIF20A in the proliferation of CCC, suggesting that targeting this molecule may contribute to reversing the malignant potential consequently affecting the oncologic outcome of CCC patients.
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