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Blue Faery: The Adrienne Wilson Liver Cancer Association

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QSC Launches ‘Protect Yourself’ Campaign To Raise Awareness On Liver Cancer
28 July 2019
Qatar Cancer Society (QCS) has created the “Protect Yourself” campaign to raise awareness of liver cancer. Nour Mekkia, Health Educator at QCS, explains that liver cancer is more common in males and the elderly. She defines liver cancer as an uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the liver, which is primary liver cancer. When abnormal cells spread to the liver from another part of the body, that is known as metastatic liver cancer. Risk factors include type 2 diabetes, obesity, and occupational exposure to chemicals. “Chronic viral hepatitis B & C these infections can lead to cirrhosis and liver cancer,” said Mekkia.

Ensure A Healthy Liver By Including And Avoiding These Foods In Your Diet
28 July 2019
Our daily diets play an important role in our general health and the health of our liver. Some foods improve liver health, while others have adverse effects. Coffee is considered one of the best beverages to consume if you want to have a healthy liver. According to several studies, drinking coffee lowers the risk of liver diseases and cancers, and can also help to treat the diseases and reduce inflammation in the liver. Garlic is also a great food item to add to your diet if you want a healthy liver. Another study shows that the consumption of garlic can help in reducing weight and fat content. All members of the berry family, i.e., blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, are rich in antioxidants, which make them a preferred choice of food to treat many health issues. Antioxidants play an important role in keeping us healthy. Studies also suggest that berries help strengthen the immune system.

Specific Peptide-Enhanced Affinity Receptor T Cells For Hepatocellular Carcinoma
24 July 2019
AFPc³³²T in Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) is a phase 1, open-label, first-in-human clinical trial to evaluate the safety and anti-tumor activity. Lipika Goyal, MD, a gastrointestinal medical oncologist specializing in hepatobiliary cancers at Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and one of the trial’s principal investigators explains, “We use the patient’s own T cells and modify them to recognize the cancer as foreign.” Researchers are currently enrolling patients into the study; eligible participants will have their T cells collected and sent to the manufacturer for genetic modification. So far, two patients have been safely treated.

Recommendations For Personalized HCC Treatment With Y90 Therasphere™ Published By An International Multidisciplinary Group
23 July 2019
BTG is a global healthcare company, creating personalized treatment for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) with TheraSphere™. Data from their recent study, Dosisphere phase II, has been published. This study compared the efficacy of TheraSphere in 56 patients with at least one lesion greater than 7cm, using a personalized approach with Simplicit90Y dosimetry software vs standard dosimetry. Dosimetry refers to dose history and calculation of an absorbed dose in tissue. Higher response rates of 71% were seen in the personalized prospective dosimetry arm vs 36% with standard dosimetry. “The future for radioembolization is personalized dosimetry,” said Prof Garin, Principal Investigator of the study.

Liver Cancer Symptoms: The Sign In Your Eyes You Could Have The Deadly Condition
23 July 2019
The early stages of liver cancer tend to have vague symptoms. One sign to be wary of is yellow eyes, according to Cancer Research UK. Yellow eyes are a sign of jaundice, which is a condition that can also cause the skin to turn yellow. The cancer charity explains: “When you have jaundice your wee (urine) is darker than normal and your poo (stools or feces) is lighter in color.” Other symptoms include unintentional weight loss, loss of appetite, pain or swelling in the abdomen, and itchy skin. The symptoms of liver cancer usually don’t appear until the cancer is at an advanced stage, which makes recognizing symptoms even more important. Treatment for liver cancer depends on how advanced the cancer is and if it’s spread to other areas of the body. Chemotherapy, radiotherapy and radio frequency ablation are some of the treatment options for liver cancer.

FDA Grants Breakthrough Therapy Designation To Keytruda-Lenvima Combination For Hepatocellular Carcinoma
23 July 2019
The FDA recently granted therapy designation to pembrolizumab in combination with lenvatinib as first-line treatment for patients with advanced unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). “As part of our ongoing collaboration with Eisai, we are committed to evaluating the potential of Keytruda plus Lenvima across a number of different types of cancer,” Jonathan Cheng, MD, vice president for oncology clinical research at Merck Research Laboratories. This decision was based on interim results from the phase 1B KEYNOTE-524/Study 116.

Expert Discusses Impact Of Survival Outcomes In KEYNOTE-240 Trial For Advanced HCC
22 July 2019
A recent study called the KEYNOTE-240 (NCT02702401) trial showed a survival benefit in the second-line hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) setting, but it did not meet its primary endpoints. The phase III study was randomized, and placebo controlled. It investigated pembrolizumab (Keytruda) in patients with advanced HCC who were previously treated with sorafenib (Nexavar). 413 patients were randomized 2:1 to receive either pembrolizumab plus best supportive care or placebo. After a median follow-up of 13.8 months, both progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS), the co-primary endpoints of this study, were improved, but these findings did not meet statistical significance.

Nivolumab, Ipilimumab Combo Yields Clinically Meaningful Responses In Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma
22 July 2019
Nivolumab (Opdivo) monotherapy is currently indicated for the treatment of patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), who were previously treated with the targeted therapy sorafenib. Researchers have observed clinically meaningful responses and an acceptable safety profile in the assessment of safety and efficacy of nivolumab in combination with ipilimumab (Yervoy). During the CheckMate 040 trial, nivolumab monotherapy, seven patients achieved a complete response with a median duration of response of 17 months. Only 5% of patients had a treatment-related adverse event that led to treatment discontinuation.

Tiziana Reports Phase 2a Clinical Data With Milciclib Monotherapy In Sorafenib-Refractory Or -Intolerant Patients With Unresectable Or Metastatic Hepatocellular Carcinoma
22 July 2019
Tiziana Life Sciences is a biotechnology company focusing on the discovery and development of innovative therapeutics for inflammation and oncology indications. Recently, positive results were reported for their Phase 2a trial of Milciclib as a monotherapy in patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Among the 28 evaluable patients, 14 completed the 6-month duration study. 9 out of the 14 patients requested to continue the treatment after completing the 6-month trial period. Overall, treatment with Milciclib was well-tolerated. Secondary endpoints of efficacy including progression-free survival (PFS) and time to progression (TTP) are currently being evaluated.

New Biomarker-Guided Strategy Has Potential For Liver Cancer Treatment
15 July 2019
A study at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center discovered a cellular pathway tied to cancer. This pathway may be beneficial in reducing side effects and extending duration of immunotherapy in some patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Researchers looked at a cellular pathway formed when a protein known as interleukin-6 (IL-6) activates an enzyme called Janus kinase 1 (JAK1). The IL-6/JAK1 pathway is often observed in tumors and may play a role in cancer evasion by regulating cellular function in programmed death ligand 1 (PD-L1), a type of protein known to suppress the immune system. The study also pointed to a potential benefit for lessening immunotherapy side effects, which sometimes can shorten the amount of time patients can stay on treatment.

Combinations May Be The Future Of Liver Cancer Treatment
15 July 2019
In the past 15 years, the treatment landscape for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has shifted dramatically. The next phase of innovation, according to Dr. Josep M. Llovet, a professor of medicine and the director of the Liver Cancer Program at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City is likely to involve combinations of these drugs to better outcomes for patients. The management of the advanced stages of HCC has five main drugs: Sorafenib (Nexavar) and lenvatinib (Lenvima) in the front line, and in the second line we have regorafenib (Stivarga), cabozantinib (Cabometyx) and ramucirumab (Cyramza).

WVU Performs First Robotic Liver Surgery
13 July 2019
Surgeons at the West Virginia University (WVU) Cancer Institute have performed a robotic-assisted surgery to implant a hepatic artery. This was the first time this surgery has been performed robotically in the state. Hepatic artery infusion pumps allow oncologists to deliver chemotherapy directly to the liver through the hepatic artery, the main blood supply to the liver. The pump is filled every two weeks and continuously delivers chemotherapy to the liver. Dr. Emily Groves and Dr. Brian Boone performed the surgery.

Can Green Tea Prevent Liver Cancer?
13 July 2019
Fung Lung Chung, PhD and associate Professor of Oncology Aiwu Ruth He, MD, PhD, at Georgetown are testing the power of an extract found in the green tea. Animal studies as well as research in human liver biopsies have shown that Chung’s compound, TE, can stop cancer transition if the liver produces a chemical that can cause DNA damage TE minimizes the DNA damage. The current trial is enrolling people with liver cirrhosis who are at substantial risk of developing tumors. The trial is being led by Ruth He and is being conducted with MedStar and the University of Puerto Rico.

Neoadjuvant RT Boosts Survival In Liver Cancer With PVTT
12 July 2019
Chinese researchers have discovered that Neoadjuvant radiotherapy improved survival rates in hepatocellular cancer (HCC) patients with portal vein tumor thrombus (PVTT). Results from a randomized, multicenter, controlled trial at three hospitals in China show overall survival rates to be 89.0% at 6 months, 75.2% at 12 months, 43.9% at 18 months, and 27.4% at 24 months. Shuqun Cheng, MD, of Naval Military Medical University in Shanghai, and colleagues recruited 164 patients with resectable HCC and PVTT. Overall response rate in radiotherapy recipients was 20.7% (17 patients); stable disease was seen in 70.7% (58 patients).

New Legislation Allocates Funding For Liver And Bile Duct Cancer Research
12 July 2019
According the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Hawaii has one of the highest rates of liver and bile duct cancer in the nation. About 200 people in Hawaii die from liver and bile duct cancer every year. Dr. Herbert Yu, program director, cancer epidemiology program, UH Cancer Center said, “We want to study together to see if there’s any difference or interaction between the two so give us more complete picture of the disease.” The legislation provides researchers $350,000 for a year.

When To Use Direct-Acting Antivirals In Hepatocellular Carcinoma
8 July 2019
Direct-acting antiviral agents (DAAs) have replaced interferon-based treatments for hepatitis C virus (HCV) and offer several advantages. A few early reports associated first-generation DAAs with an increased risk for new and recurrent Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC). Multiple studies have since shown that DAAs significantly reduce the risk for new HCC in patients with HCV. A recent review of 11 retrospective studies that examined HCC incidence including over 30,000 patients treated with DAA therapy showed an approximate 70% reduction in HCC risk. Amit Singal, MD, medical director of the Liver Tumor Program, clinical chief of hepatology, and an associate professor with UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas, was lead investigator.

Ramucirumab Effective Irrespective Of Prior TACE In Advanced HCC With Elevated AFP
6 July 2019
According to an analysis of REACH/REACH-2, Ramucirumab improves survival for patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and elevated alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) regardless of prior transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) treatment. Although TACE has been shown to prolong overall survival (OS), patients have high rates of recurrence and require subsequent systemic therapy. Patients with advanced HCC with progression or intolerance to sorafenib, were randomized in REACH (1:1) or REACH-2 (2:1). Dr Meyer reported that the analysis found efficacy of ramucirumab to be similar between TACE and non-TACE subgroups. Ramucirumab treatment also improved progression free survival (PFS) compared to placebo in patients who received prior TACE.

Expert Considers First- And Second-Line Liver Cancer Treatment Options In 2 HCC Case Studies
5 July 2019
Aiwu Ruth He, MD, PhD, discussed with a group of physicians the considerations she makes when deciding on treatment for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Dr He is a medical oncologist at Medstar Georgetown University Hospital. She discussed two patient scenarios. The first was an otherwise healthy, 77-year-old Caucasian woman with a history of alcohol use, who presented to her primary care physician complaining of abdominal pain and fatigue. Lenvatinib (Lenvima) 12 mg twice a day was initiated. The second was a 63-year-old man with chronic hepatitis C (HCV) infection. He was started on sorafenib 400 mg every other day.

Understanding Immunotherapy
4 July 2019
Immunotherapy is a treatment that uses certain parts of a person’s immune system to fight diseases, such as cancer. Immunotherapy can be done in two different ways. The first option is to stimulate the patient’s own immune system to work harder or smarter to attack cancer cells. The second is to give the patient immune system components such as manmade-immune system proteins. It is important for the immune system to tell the difference between normal cells and foreign cells. To do this, it uses ‘checkpoints,’ which are molecules on certain immune cells that need to be activated to start an immune response.

Hepatocellular Carcinoma: Switching to Systemic Therapy
3 July 2019
Josep Llovet, MD, PhD explains that the number of treatments a patient should receive, or when they should switch to systemic therapies is always a question. 2 or 3 treatments is the median number of treatments in trials. We now have 6 potential treatments that are effective. Physicians are more comfortable switching to systemic therapy because they have the frontline treatment of lenvatinib/sorafenib, then a second-line treatment of regorafenib, or checkpoint inhibitors. Arndt Vogel, MD, PhD discusses different triggers for systemic therapies. Vogel explains that therapies such as TACE in Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) can also damage the liver and deteriorate liver function.

Kansas City Man Credits Innovative Doctor And TV Ad For Saving His Life
2 July 2019
Willie Woods, 72, and his oncologist at St. Lukes, Dr. Addison Tolentino, met two years ago. After seeing an advertisement for Opdivo, though intended for use on lung cancer, Woods decided to take a chance and see if it would have positive results for his liver cancer. When Woods asked Tolentino about the possibility, Tolentino replied, “Let’s go for it.” Statistics show that only 18% of people survive Woods’ type of liver cancer five years after a diagnosis. Since Woods started the drug, it’s been approved for liver cancer and several other cancers as well.

Blue Faery’s Patient Community Shares Practical Resources To Help Patients With HCC Manage Their Own Care
2 July 2019
Blue Faery: The Adrienne Wilson Liver Cancer Association provides patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and their caregivers a wide range of resources. Patient advocacy organizations have grown from the need for patients to share practical knowledge. Patient-focused forums can help patients connect with other patients, patient groups, and current research programs and clinical trials. Blue Faery’s ultimate goal is to save people from HCC through research, education, and advocacy. The online community forum enables HCC patients and their caregivers to share their stories and receive peer support.

New Online Resources Provide Support To The Liver Cancer Community
25 June 2019
Blue Faery: The Adrienne Wilson Liver Cancer Association was founded by Andrea Wilson after the loss of her 15-year-old sister Adrienne to Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC). Andrea discussed Blue Faery’s new initiatives at the 2019 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting. Blue Faery hosts an online forum, Blue Faery Liver Cancer Community, for patients and caregivers. In an interview, Andrea states, “My first piece of advice is to get a second opinion and, in many cases, a third opinion. No matter how much you love your doctor, always get a second opinion.”

Asia-Pacific Hepatocellular Carcinoma (AHCC) Trials Group Meeting
25 June 2019
The 3rd annual Symposium of the Singapore Liver Cancer Consortium (SLCC) was hosted by the Asia-Pacific Hepatocellular Carcinoma (AHCC) Trials Group. Members of the AHCC Trials Group, other HCC researchers attended. Prof Pierce Chow, Senior Consultant, Division of Surgical Oncology, National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS) stated, “In pursuance of our aims to bring about better clinical outcomes for patients with HCC, the AHCC Trials Group is constantly exploring collaborations with investigators from both academic research institutes and industry partners.” The AHCC trials group has recently initiated 2 prospective studies on HCC in the Asia-Pacific (AHCC protocols 07 and 08).

Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Opdivo Misses Its Shot At Earlier Use In Liver Cancer
24 June 2019
Opdivo, developed by Bristol-Myers Squibb, already has an FDA approval in liver cancer patients who have been treated with Bayer’s Nexavar for Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC). A recent study shows that drug failed to beat Nexavar at extending patients’ lives in a phase 3 study called CheckMate-459. The survival data didn’t meet the statistical significance bar in the trial. The CheckMate-040 trial also shows that the tumor response rate it of 14.3%, isn’t that much different from the 17% Keytruda posted in its phase 2 Keynote-224 study.

Race-Matched Liver Transplants Improve Survival For Black Patients With Hepatocellular Carcinoma
24 June 2019
Dr. T. Clark Gamblin, chief of surgical oncology at Medical College of Wisconsin, and colleagues utilized the United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) Organ Procurement and Transplant Network database to obtain records for adults who underwent liver transplantation. This team has a strong interest in primary liver cancer. Liver transplant is one treatment option for patients with early-stage disease. They identified 1,384 black patients, of whom 325 (23.5%) underwent race-matched transplant. Patients who received race-matched transplant achieved a median overall survival (OS) of 135 months vs. 78 months for those with non-race-matched transplants.

Arbutus Receives Regulatory Clearance To Initiate Phase 1a/1b Clinical Trial Of AB-729
20 June 2019
Arbutus Biopharma Corporation has been approved to initiate a Phase 1a/1b clinical trial of AB-729. Arbutus is an industry-leading Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) therapeutic solutions. AB-729 is an RNA interference (RNAi) therapeutic targeted to hepatocytes. It has been shown to reduce viral antigens and inhibit HBV proliferation. AB-506 is an oral HBV capsid inhibitor. HBV which also inhibits proliferation. Before receiving approval, Arbutus was required to complete a three- and six-month toxicology study.

Stem Cells Obtained From Menstrual Blood May Epigenetically Inhibit Liver Cancer
18 June 2019
Menstruation is a normal and natural part of human life which signifies a healthy reproductive system and a women’s ability to bear children. However, it has been viewed in a negative light and not always appreciated for its real purpose. Menstrual blood and tissue are valuable resources of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). In a recent study, researchers tested menstrual derived MSCs (MenSCs) on a certain type of liver cancer to determine if they could inhibit tumor cell growth. The results revealed that these stem cells indeed induced had an anticancer effect. these stem cells are readily available and can be isolated non-invasively from voluntary female donors without invoking ethical concern.

Poor Oral Health May Up Liver Cancer Risk
18 June 2019
A recent study shows that poor oral health is associated with a 75% increased risk of Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC). Haydee WT Jordao, from the Queen’s University Belfast, and lead author of the study, along with his team analyzed over 469,000 people in the UK. They investigated the association between oral health conditions and the risk of several gastrointestinal cancers, including liver, colon, rectum and pancreatic cancer. Participants with poor oral health were more likely to be younger, female, living in deprived socioeconomic areas and consumed less than two portions of fruit and vegetables per day. When the liver is affected by diseases, such as hepatitis, cirrhosis or cancer, its function will decline and bacteria will survive for longer and therefore have the potential to cause more harm, explains Jordao.

Lumping All Hispanic Americans Together Masks The Differences In Cancer Outcomes
17 June 2019
A San Diego State University (SDSU) study is among the first to describe trends in cancer mortality by specific Hispanic groups. There are some significant differences in food habits, cultural mores, and lifestyles among Cubans, Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, and Central and South Americans in the U.S. The study came about because a third-generation Mexican-American graduate student researcher at SDSU, Steven Zamora, wanted to understand what his own risks were. His study shows that Mexican American and Puerto Rican American males were dying at twice the rate of non-Hispanic whites from stomach and liver cancers.

NASH Rapidly Overtaking Hepatitis C As Cause Of Liver Cancer
16 June 2019
Nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) is rapidly gaining hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection as the leading contributor to liver cancer in the United States. Based on research results, the prevalence of HCV has been in steady decline since 2005. Researchers have forecast a decline to 1.06 million cases by 2025, from the 3.22 million cases in 2005. In terms of effect on the prevalence of Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC), the modeling suggested cases of HCV-related liver cancer were predicted to peak at around 29,000 cases in 2025. A higher proportion of patients with NASH develop cirrhosis. The probability of developing HCC is higher in patients with HCV.

Individual Approach May Help To Determine Second-Line Treatment Options In Liver Cancer
14 June 2019
Until 2018, patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) only had one front-line treatment option: Nexavar(sorafenib). Since Nexavar was approved in 2007, no positive trials were announced until 2017. August 2018, the FDA approved Lenvima (lenvatinib) for the front-line treatment of patients with unresectable HCC based on results from the phase 3 REFLECT trial. The results from the trial showed a median overall survival of 13.6 months in the Lenvima arm compared with 12.3 months in the Nexavar arm. The median progression-free survival was 7.4 months in those who received Lenvima versus 3.7 months in patients treated with Nexavar.

Hepatocellular Carcinoma HCC Treatment Market Pegged For Robust Expansion During 2016-2026
14 June 2019
Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) is currently expected to be the third leading cause of death worldwide. The increase in incidences of HCC associated with hepatitis C virus are expected to grow. HCV infection is the principal cause of HCC in North America, Europe, and Japan. Inventions in technologies for cancer treatment procedures are expected to launch into the market. HCC treatments include chemotherapy and local ablation therapy. Monoclonal antibodies and other immunological treatments are generally known for their lesser side effects and better efficacy.

Sustained Virologic Response In Patients With Chronic Hepatitis C And Liver Cancer
13 June 2019
According to a systematic review and meta-analysis, efforts are needed to aggressively screen, diagnose, and treat Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC). Patients with chronic hepatitis C and HCC may be less likely to achieve cure status than those without HCC. Questions still remain about the effect of HCC on response to interferon-free direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapy for patients with chronic hepatitis C. Researchers investigated the effect of DAA therapy on sustained virologic response (SVR) among 3341 patients with chronic hepatitis C and HCC and 35,701 patients with chronic hepatitis C but without HCC from 49 studies conducted in 15 countries. Overall, they found that SVR rates were lower in patients having chronic hepatitis C with HCC compared with patients diagnosed without HCC.

Selective Effect Signal On Liver Cancer Tissue In Phase IA Study With MIV-818
12 June 2019
Data from the first six patients with advanced cancer in the liver treated with increasing MIV-818 doses has been published. MIV-818 is developed by Medivir AB. MIV-818 is a pro-drug designed to selectively treat liver cancers and to minimize side effects. Scientist believe that it has the potential to become the first liver-targeted, orally administered drug to benefit patients with HCC. The phase I/II study of MIV-818 consists of three parts. Based on the positive results from the first six patients, Medivir has decided to initiate the phase IB in which the dose is escalated in cohorts of three patients.

Regular Aspirin Use And Risk Of Hepatocellular Carcinoma And Epithelial Ovarian Cancer
10 June 2019
According to Tracey G. Simon, MD, MPH, of Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and colleagues the use of at least two standard-dose aspirin tablets per week was associated with a significant reduction in the risk for Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC). The study involved data from 133,371 participants. The investigators reported on aspirin use, frequency, dosage, and duration of use. The investigators concluded: “This study suggests that regular, long-term aspirin use is associated with a dose-dependent reduction in [Hepatocellular Carcinoma] risk, which is apparent after 5 or more years of use.”

Bayer And China’s Cstone Pharmaceuticals Team Up On Cancer Program
10 June 2019
CStone Pharmaceuticals and Bayer are working together to evaluate the safety and efficacy of a checkpoint inhibitor with a multi-kinase inhibitor for the treatment of multiple cancers. They will pair CStone’s CS1001 with Bayer’s regorafenib, an oral multi-kinase inhibitor that targets VEGFR, FGFR, CSF1R and other receptors. CStone will be the study sponsor and Bayer will provide regorafenib throughout the clinical trial program. Bayer’s Regorafenib, known as Stivarga in the United States is approved in more than 80 countries for the second-line treatment of advanced hepatocellular (HCC).

Just 18% Of People With Hepatitis/HIV Co-Infection And Cirrhosis Are Screened For Liver Cancer As Often As Recommended
10 June 2019
Researchers report that there is a “strikingly low adherence” to clinical guidelines for ultrasound screening for Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) in western Europe. The risk of HCC is greater for people with cirrhosis and for people with hepatitis/HIV co-infection. Dr Sophie Willems and colleagues collected data from the Collaboration of Observational HIV Epidemiological Research in Europe (COHERE). 646 people were included in the analysis. Their aim was to assess compliance with HCC screening guidelines in a large European cohort of HIV-positive people with hepatitis B or C co-infection and cirrhosis.

Pembrolizumab For Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma Reduces Mortality Risk In ‘Technically … Negative Study’
10 June 2019
According to findings from the randomized phase 3 KEYNOTE-240 study, patients with previously treated advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) demonstrated reduced risk for death and improved progression free survival (PFS) with the addition of pembrolizumab. Richard S. Finn, MD, assistant professor of medicine in the department of medicine, division of hematology/internal medicine at David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and colleagues evaluated 413 patients. After a median follow-up of 13.8 months, 10.1% of patients continued to receive pembrolizumab and 3% remained on placebo. Compared with placebo, pembrolizumab improved OS and PFS.

Nuts Provoke Liver Cancer
8 June 2019
According to American nutritionists, scientists have identified nuts as another potential cause of liver cancer. Nuts contain aflatoxins: the mycotoxin producing fungi – Aspergillus. Usually this fungus is found in soil, which may affect some food crops. Mycotoxins have long been recognized to be carcinogenic. On the other hand, nuts contain large amounts of vitamin E, which has a beneficial effect on the skin, cardiovascular system and brain. They also contain a lot of phytosterols, which regulate cholesterol levels.

New Liver Cancer Therapy To Be Added To The NHI
7 June 2019
A second-line targeted therapy for end-stage liver cancer has been included in the National Health Insurance (NHI) as stated by the Director-General Lee Po-chang of the National Health Insurance Administration. Specialists suggest that medical practitioners and patients are exposed to undue stress by NHI rules. While the average life expectancy of a person with end-stage cancer is about six months, the use of the first and second-line therapies can extend that by 26 months on average, he said, adding that the administration’s policy is expected to significantly reduce the financial pressure on patients. First and second-line oral medication can inhibit the growth of blood vessels in tumors and tumor cells, delaying progression of the disease and boosting the survival rate for end-stage liver cancer, Lee King-teh, chairperson of the Taiwan Surgical Society of Gastroenterology said.

Sorafenib Plus Hepatic Arterial Infusion Chemo Improves OS In HCC With Portal Vein Invasion
7 June 2019
According to a study, sorafenib plus hepatic arterial infusion chemotherapy (HAIC) in the first-line setting improved survival in patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) compared with sorafenib alone. Dr. MinKe He, MD, Department of Hepatobiliary Oncology, Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center, in China, and colleagues assessed the safety and efficacy of using sorafenib plus HAIC versus sorafenib monotherapy in patients with HCC and portal vein invasion. Patients were enrolled from 5 hospitals across China between and followed-up with for 10 months. The results showed a median overall survival (OS) of 13.37 months in the combination arm versus 7.13 months in the sorafenib-alone arm.

Cstone Initiates Combination Therapy Trial For Advanced Liver Cancer
6 June 2019
CStone Pharmaceuticals received approval to initiate clinical development in China of a combination therapy for patients with Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC). The multicenter, open-label and multidose phase 1b/2 study will evaluate the safety, tolerability and efficacy of CS1001, an anti-PD-LI monoclonal antibody, with BLU-554, a potent and highly selective inhibitor of fibroblast growth factor receptor 4 (FGFR4). CS1001 was well-tolerated and demonstrated anti-tumor activity in other cancers as well. BLU-554 was well-tolerated and demonstrated encouraging anti-tumor activity in a phase 1 study and was granted orphan drug designation for HCC by the FDA. “We expect the combination of BLU-554 with CS1001 can offer an important additional treatment option for this challenging disease,” said Frank Jiang, MD, PhD, chairman and CEO of CStone.

How Has US LI-RADS Performed In HCC Screening One Year After Implementation?
5 June 2019
John D. Millet, MD, MHS, with Michigan Medicine in Ann Arbor and colleagues studied more than 2,000 patients to evaluate the performance of the ACR Liver Reporting and Data System (LI-RADS) for diagnosing Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) on ultrasound. All patients had been assigned US LI-RADS observation categories and visualization scores. Cirrhosis was the most common indication for HCC screening at 51.4%, followed by non-cirrhotic hepatitis B virus (27.1%) and noncirrhotic hepatitis C virus (11.4%). the team concluded that the ACR’s scoring system implemented in 2017 emphasized sensitivity and negative predictive value.

Promising Early Results For BMS’ Investigational HCC Study
4 June 2019
Bristol-Myers Squibb announced the first results from its investigational Opdivo (nivolumab) plus Yervoy (ipilimumab) cohorts of the Phase I/II CheckMate -040 study at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) meeting 2019. The study evaluated the combination in patients with advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) previously treated with sorafenib. Patients experienced a median overall survival (OS) of 22.8 months with a 30-month OS rate of 44%. “We are encouraged by these early results which demonstrate a benefit/risk profile for the efficacy observed with the nivolumab plus ipilimumab combination in this cohort of CheckMate -040 that warrants further investigation,” said Faisal Mehmud, executive medical director, Bristol-Myers Squibb, UK and Ireland.

Blood Transfusion During Liver Cancer Surgery Linked With Higher Risk Of Cancer Recurrence And Death
2 June 2019
According to new research being presented at this year’s Euroanaesthesia congress held in Austria, receiving a blood transfusion during curative surgery Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) is associated with a much higher risk of cancer recurrence and premature death. Findings showed that transfusion of 1 to 4 units of blood increased the risk of cancer recurrence by 23% and death by 55%. “The reason why blood transfusions substantially worsen cancer prognosis remains unclear, but it is likely to be related to the suppressive effects on the immune system” said Dr Ying-Hsuan Tai from Taipei Medical University Shuang Ho Hospital in Taiwan who led the research.

Different Types Of Medication That Could Cause Liver Cancer
1 June 2019
Over the counter (OTC) pain relievers come with numerous side effects. They are interfering with the liver’s primary role in the body. The drugs are said to cause toxic liver disease which in dire cases, causes death. Prescription drugs have been linked to various liver diseases. They stress the liver by subjecting it to overwork when purging toxins. Chemotherapy treatment can also cause more harm than the good to the liver.

 

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