Effects of Antiviral Therapy on the Recurrence of Hepatocellular Carcinoma After Curative Resection or Liver Transplantation
Hepatitis Monthly: October 20, 2012,
12 (10); 6031
October 20, 2012
Article Type: Review Article
November 27, 2011
February 2, 2012
G. Effects of Antiviral Therapy on the Recurrence of Hepatocellular Carcinoma After Curative Resection or Liver Transplantation,
Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a fatal disease. Chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) and/or hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is the major cause of HCC. High viral replication rate and related hepatic/systematic inflammation are the major risk factors in HCC recurrence after hepatectomy or liver transplantation.
Some of the carcinogenesis-related HBV mutations are also associated with poor prognosis for HCC patients. Antiviral therapy is an option for improving HCC prognosis after surgery. In case of HBV-associated HCC, treatment with interferon and nucleos(t)ide analogues (NAs), especially interferon, is effective in improving the prognosis. However, long-term use of NAs increases the possibility of developing drug-resistant viral mutations such as the HBV rtA181T/sW172 mutation, which increases the risk of HCC recurrence.
In cases of HCV-associated HCC, standard interferon with or without ribavirin therapy is effective in improving the prognosis of HCV-associated HCC; however, some HCV mutations, such as the amino acid substitution M91L, are associated with treatment failure and a poor prognosis. Therapeutic efficacy needs to be confirmed using largescale, randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials.
Surveillance of viral mutations during antiviral treatment and a better understanding of the associations of HCC recurrence with viral load, inflammation-associated signaling, and environmental factors can aid the development of more effective strategies for the prevention of HCC recurrence after surgery.
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