Research Paper Volume 12, Issue 19 pp 19129—19146

Development and validation of a survival model for thyroid carcinoma based on autophagy-associated genes

Baoai Han1, *, , Xiuping Yang2, *, , Davood K. Hosseini3,4, , Pan Luo5, , Mengzhi Liu2, , Xiaoxiang Xu2, , Ya Zhang2, , Hongguo Su2, , Tao Zhou6, , Haiying Sun3,6, , Xiong Chen2, &, ,

  • 1 Public Laboratory, Key Laboratory of Breast Cancer Prevention and Therapy, Ministry of Education, Tianjin Medical University Cancer Institute and Hospital, National Clinical Research Center for Cancer, Tianjin Medical University, Tianjin 30000, China
  • 2 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University, Wuhan 430071, China
  • 3 Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
  • 4 Department of Internal Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, USA 94305, USA
  • 5 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck surgery, Wuhan Central Hospital, Wuhan 430014, China
  • 6 Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Union Hospital, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan 430022, China
* Equal contribution

Received: April 21, 2020       Accepted: June 29, 2020       Published: October 14, 2020
How to Cite

Copyright: © 2020 Han et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Abnormalities in autophagy-related genes (ARGs) are closely related to the occurrence and development of thyroid carcinoma (THCA). However, the effect of ARGs on the prognosis of THCA remains unclear. Here, by analyzing data from TCGA, 26 differentially expressed ARGs were screened. Cox regression and Lasso regression were utilized to analyze the prognosis of the training group, and a risk model was constructed. Our results show that low-risk patients had better overall survival (OS) than high-risk patients, and the area under the ROC curve in the training and testing groups was significant (3-year AUC, 0.735 vs 0.796; 5-year AUC, 0.821 vs 0.804). In addition, a comprehensive analysis of the 5 identified ARGs demonstrated that most of them were related to OS in THCA patients, and two of them (CX3CL1 and CDKN2A) were differentially expressed in THCA and normal thyroid tissues at the protein level. GSEA suggested that the inactivation of the cell defense system and the activation of some classical tumor signaling pathways are important driving forces for the progression of THCA. This study demonstrated that the 5 ARGs in the survival model are promising multidimensional biomarkers for the diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of THCA.


ARG: Autophagy-related gene; ROC: Receiver operating characteristic; DEARGs: Differential-expressed autophagy-related gene; OS: Overall survival; THCA: Thyroid carcinoma; GSEA: Gene set enrichment analysis.