Bioinformatics analysis of the potentially functional circRNA-miRNA-mRNA network in breast cancer.

Erdogan C., Suer İ., Kaya M., Ozturk Ş., Aydin N., Kurt Z.

PloS one, vol.19, no.4, 2024 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 19 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2024
  • Doi Number: 10.1371/journal.pone.0301995
  • Journal Name: PloS one
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Agricultural & Environmental Science Database, Animal Behavior Abstracts, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), BIOSIS, Biotechnology Research Abstracts, Chemical Abstracts Core, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, Index Islamicus, Linguistic Bibliography, MEDLINE, Pollution Abstracts, Psycinfo, zbMATH, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Breast cancer (BC) is the most common cancer among women with high morbidity and mortality. Therefore, new research is still needed for biomarker detection. GSE101124 and GSE182471 datasets were obtained from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO) database to evaluate differentially expressed circular RNAs (circRNAs). The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) and Molecular Taxonomy of Breast Cancer International Consortium (METABRIC) databases were used to identify the significantly dysregulated microRNAs (miRNAs) and genes considering the Prediction Analysis of Microarray classification (PAM50). The circRNA-miRNA-mRNA relationship was investigated using the Cancer-Specific CircRNA, miRDB, miRTarBase, and miRWalk databases. The circRNA–miRNA–mRNA regulatory network was annotated using Gene Ontology (GO) analysis and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway database. The protein-protein interaction network was constructed by the STRING database and visualized by the Cytoscape tool. Then, raw miRNA data and genes were filtered using some selection criteria according to a specific expression level in PAM50 subgroups. A bottleneck method was utilized to obtain highly interacted hub genes using cytoHubba Cytoscape plugin. The Disease-Free Survival and Overall Survival analysis were performed for these hub genes, which are detected within the miRNA and circRNA axis in our study. We identified three circRNAs, three miRNAs, and eighteen candidate target genes that may play an important role in BC. In addition, it has been determined that these molecules can be useful in the classification of BC, especially in determining the basal-like breast cancer (BLBC) subtype. We conclude that hsa_circ_0000515/miR-486-5p/SDC1 axis may be an important biomarker candidate in distinguishing patients in the BLBC subgroup of BC.