Human HCC cell lines (SMMC-7721, Huh7, Hep3B, LM3) were purchased from FuHeng Cell Center, Shanghai, China. HepG2 and 293T were purchased from ATCC, Virginia, US. SK-Hep1 and PLC/PRF5 were purchased from OBIO, Shanghai, China. Primary cultured human liver cancer cell line (CLC4 and CLC13) were gifts from Dr Hui Lijian’s Lab (CEMC, CAS, Shanghai, China) and maintained according to their published literature. HepG2, SMMC-7721, Huh7, Hep3B, LM3, PLC/PRF5 and 293T were maintained in Dulbecco’s Modified Eagle’s Medium (DMEM; Gibco, Grand Island, NY, US) supplemented with 10% fetal bovine serum (FBS; Gibco), penicillin (100 mg/mL) and streptomycin (100 U/mL) (Gibco). Human HCC cell line SK-Hep1 were cultured in Minimum Essential Medium (MEM; Gibco) supplemented with 10% FBS, 100 mg/mL penicillin and 100 U/mL streptomycin. CLC4 and CLC13 were maintained in RPMI1640 (Gibco) with 10% FBS, 1mM sodium pyruvate, 10 μg/mL insulin, 5.5 μg/mL transferrin, 40 ng/mL epidermal growth factor (EGF), and 6.7 ng/mL sodium selenite (Gibco). All cells were grown in an atmosphere containing 5% CO2 at 37°C. Human liver cancer specimens were obtained from the Eastern Hepatobiliary Surgery Hospital/Institute (Shanghai, China), with approval of the Institutional Review Committee of Shanghai Eastern Hepatobiliary Surgery Hospital and written informed consent of all patients.

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