The complexity of breast cancer includes many interacting biological processes that make it difficult to find appropriate therapeutic treatments. Therefore, identifying potential diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers is urgently needed. Previous studies demonstrated that 26S proteasome delta subunit, non-ATPase (PSMD) family members significantly contribute to the degradation of damaged, misfolded, abnormal, and foreign proteins. However, transcriptional expressions of PSMD family genes in breast cancer still remain largely unexplored. Consequently, we used a holistic bioinformatics approach to explore PSMD genes involved in breast cancer patients by integrating several high-throughput databases, including The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA), cBioPortal, Oncomine, and Kaplan-Meier plotter. These data demonstrated that PSMD1, PSMD2, PSMD3, PSMD7, PSMD10, PSMD12, and PSMD14 were expressed at significantly higher levels in breast cancer tissue compared to normal tissues. Notably, the increased expressions of PSMD family genes were correlated with poor prognoses of breast cancer patients, which suggests their roles in tumorigenesis. Meanwhile, network and pathway analyses also indicated that PSMD family genes were positively correlated with ubiquinone metabolism, immune system, and cell-cycle regulatory pathways. Collectively, this study revealed that PSMD family members are potential prognostic biomarkers for breast cancer progression and possible promising clinical therapeutic targets.
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