Breast cancer with metastasis especially brain metastasis represents a significant
cause of morbidity and mortality in patients. In this study, we aimed to investigate
the hub genes and potential molecular mechanism in brain metastasis breast cancer.
Expression profiles of the genes were extracted from the Gene Expression Omnibus (GEO)
database. GO and KEGG pathway enrichment analyses were conducted at Database for Annotation,
Visualization, and Integrated Discovery. Protein-protein interaction (PPI) network
was established by STRING database constructed by Cytoscape software. Hub genes were
identified by the molecular complex detection (MCODE) plugin and the CytoHubba plugin.
The transcription factor (TF) that regulates the expression of hub genes was analyzed
using the NetworkAnalyst algorithm. Kaplan-Meier curve was used to analyze the effects
of hub genes on overall survival. Two GEO databases (GSE100534 and GSE52604) were
downloaded from GEO databases. A total of 102 overlapped genes were identified, and
the top five KEGG pathways enriched were pathways in cancer, HTLV-I infection, focal
adhesion, ECM-receptor interaction, and protein digestion and absorption. By combing
the results of MCODE and CytoHubba, a total of 10 hub genes were selected. Kaplan-Meier
curve showed that ANLN, BUB1, TTK, and SKA3 were closely associated with the overall
survival of breast cancer patients. TF analysis results showed that E2F4, KDM5B, and
MYC were crucial regulators for these four hub genes. The current study based on the
GEO database provided novel understanding regarding the mechanism of breast cancer
metastasis to brain and may provide novel therapeutic targets.