Researchers from Thailand have uncovered important roles of the adaptor protein XB130 in cholangiocarcinoma (CCA).

“We provide the first evidence that the overexpression of XB130 is associated with tumorigenic properties of CCA cells, leading to CCA progression with aggressive clinical outcomes,” they wrote in a study recently published in the journal PLOS One.

The researchers showed the overexpression of XB130 in a cell line of intrahepatic CCA (iCCA). Knockdown of the XB130 gene using small interfering RNA resulted in decreased proliferation, migration, and invasion. Molecular studies demonstrated that those effects were due to the inhibition of the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway.

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Moreover, the authors found a positive relationship between the expression levels of XB130 and clinicopathological data in patients with CCA.

The analysis of surgically resected formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded specimens obtained from 151 patients with CCA showed that XB130 expression was positively associated with lymphovascular space invasion (β=0.2274, P =.005), intrahepatic type of CCA (β=0.1623, P =.046), high Tumor, Node, Metastasis staging (stage 3: β=0.4048, P <.001; stage 4: β=0.2363, P =.012), high T classification (T3: β=0.4314, P <.001; T4: β=0.3327, P <.001), and lymph node metastasis (β=0.2060, P =.011).

A Potential New Biomarker for the Prognosis of Intrahepatic Cholangiocarcinoma

No association was identified between the expression levels of XB130 and age, gender, histological type, margin status, moderate differentiation, poor differentiation, or M classification.

The authors believed that XB130 may be a potential prognostic factor and a therapeutic target.

XB130 is also known as actin filament-associated protein 1-like 2. It belongs to the actin filament-associated protein family of adaptor proteins. Several studies have implicated XB130 in cell proliferation, survival, and migration. Its effects have been found to cause the activation of kinases and associated downstream signaling pathways (eg, PI3K/Akt).


Poosekeaw P, Pairojkul C, Sripa B, et al. Adaptor protein XB130 regulates the aggressiveness of cholangiocarcinoma. PLOS One. 2021;16(11):e0259075. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0259075.