Research Paper Volume 13, Issue 12 pp 16513—16526

Deoxyribonuclease 1-like 3 may be a potential prognostic biomarker associated with immune infiltration in colon cancer

Jing Liu1,2, *, , Jingya Yi1, *, , Zhihong Zhang1, , Donglin Cao1,2, , Lei Li3,4, , Yachao Yao1,2, ,

  • 1 Department of Laboratory Medicine, Guangdong Second Provincial General Hospital, Guangzhou 510317, China
  • 2 The Second School of Clinical Medicine, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510317, China
  • 3 Center for Reproductive Medicine, The Third Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical University, Guangzhou 510150, China
  • 4 Key Laboratory for Reproductive Medicine of Guangdong Province, Guangzhou 510150, China
* Equal contribution

Received: November 18, 2020       Accepted: May 24, 2021       Published: June 22, 2021
How to Cite

Copyright: © 2021 Liu 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.


Colon adenocarcinoma (COAD) is a common cancer of the digestive system. It’s high morbidity and mortality make it one of the leading causes of cancer deaths. In this study, we studied the microenvironment of colon cancer to find new diagnostic markers and immunotherapy targets for colon cancer. Tumor purity of colon cancer samples in TCGA database were obtained by ESTIMATE algorithm. Then, we analyzed the association of Immune, Stromal, and Estimate scores with tumor prognosis and clinicopathological features. By comparing the gene expression profiles between tumor and normal samples, the high and low immune score groups, 117 intersecting differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were obtained. The function, molecular pathway, and prognostic value of these 117 DEGs pointed toward the importance of deoxyribonuclease 1-like 3 (DNASE1L3). Validation results from multiple databases showed low expression of DNASE1L3 in colon cancer. A single GSEA and correlation analysis of immune cells indicated that DNASE1L3 was closely related to immunity. The low expression of DNASE1L3 in colon cancer samples was measured with qRT-PCR. The scratch and cell proliferation experiments suggested that DNASE1L3 may affect cell migration. Therefore, we concluded that DNASE1L3 might be a biomarker associated with prognosis and immune infiltration in colon cancer.


COAD: colon adenocarcinoma; TME: the tumor microenvironment; DNASE1L3: deoxyribonuclease 1-like 3; TCGA: The Cancer Genome Atlas; GEO: Gene Expression Omnibus; DEmRNAs: differentially expressed mRNAs; DEGs: differentially expressed genes; PPI: protein-protein interaction; GO: Gene Ontology; KEGG: Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes; GSEA: Gene Set Enrichment Analysis; THPA: The Human Protein Atlas; TNM: Tumor Node Metastasis.