Genes & Cancer

Pairwise correlation of genes involved in glucose metabolism: a potential diagnostic marker of cancer?

Meena Kishore Sakharkar1, Karthic Rajamanickam1, Shaoping Ji2, Sarinder Kaur Dhillon3, Jian Yang1

1 Drug Discovery and Development Research Group, College of Pharmacy and Nutrition, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK S7N 5E5, Canada

2 Henan Provincial Engineering Centre for Tumor Molecular Medicine, Institute of Molecular Medicine, School of Basic Medical Sciences, Henan University, Kaifeng, Henan Province 474004, P.R. of China

3 Institute of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia


Meena Kishore Sakharkar,

Jian Yang,

Keywords: gene expression; gene pair correlation; diagnostic marker; pan-cancer analysis; protein-protein interaction network

Received: April 01, 2021 Accepted: June 11, 2021 Published: June 17, 2021


Cancer is a highly malignant disease, killing approximately 10 million people worldwide in 2020. Cancer patient survival substantially relies on early diagnosis. In this study, we evaluated whether genes involved in glucose metabolism could be used as potential diagnostic markers for cancer. In total, 127 genes were examined for their gene expression levels and pairwise gene correlations. Genes ADH1B and PDHA2 were differentially expressed in most of the 12 types of cancer and five pairs of genes exhibited consistent correlation changes (from strong correlations in normal controls to weak correlations in cancer patients) across all types of cancer. Thus, the two differentially expressed genes and five gene pairs could be potential diagnostic markers for cancer. Further preclinical and clinical studies are warranted to prove whether these genes and/or gene pairs would indeed aid in early diagnosis of cancer.

PII: 216