Published online Jul 18, 2015. doi: 10.4254/wjh.v7.i14.1834
Peer-review started: April 9, 2015
First decision: April 27, 2015
Revised: June 24, 2015
Accepted: July 11, 2015
Article in press: July 14, 2015
Published online: July 18, 2015
Hepatocellular cancer is the 5th most common cancer in the world and the third cause of death by malignant disease. Locoregional therapies are the most usual treatment of choice for patients with early or intermediate stage of disease. The main diagnostic tools for the detection of recurrence are the radiological techniques such as 4-phase computed tomography or dynamic contrast enhanced magnetic resonance imaging. However, in order to achieve best evaluation of treatment outcome and recurrence rates, there is a great need for the identification of specific and easily measured circulating biomarkers. The aim of this review is to analyze the existing data considering the prognostic significance of changes of serum diagnostic markers such as alpha-fetoprotein, des-gamma-carboxy prothrombin, alpha-fetoprotein-L3, angiogenetic factors (vascular endothelial growth factor, hypoxia inducible factor-1a) and immune parameters before and after radiofrequency ablation or transarterial chemoembolization.
Core tip: Hepatocellular cancer is the 5th most common cancer in the world and the third cause of death by malignant disease. Locoregional therapies are available for patients with early or intermediate stage of disease. However even with these techniques recurrence rates are high. The use of accurate prognostic biomarkers is of great importance in order to select the most suitable-personalised treatment. The aim of this review is to analyze the existing data regarding circulating biomarkers measured before and after locoregional therapies and their effect on treatment outcome.