Highlights of 2nd Annual ILCA Conference: Cutting-edge Treatments for Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Published: Monday, Nov 17, 2008
The International Liver Cancer Association (ILCA) takes a multidisciplinary approach to furthering the understanding and management of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). September 5-7, 2008, researchers from more than 40 countries attended the ILCA’s Second Annual Conference in Chicago, Illinois, to discuss the most recent findings on diagnosis and treatment of HCC.
The ILCA conference features cutting-edge symposia, and this year’s conference included a series of lectures highlighting innovative approaches to treating HCC; as well as general sessions, where the world’s leading clinical experts and researchers discussed recent discoveries about the pathology and molecular pathogenesis of HCC and presented the latest developments in surgical and medical treatments, clinical trials, and targeted therapies. The following summaries offer highlights of key presentations from the ILCA Second Annual Conference.

CEUS May Offer Early Evidence of Anti-Angiogenesis

Hui-Chuan Sun and colleagues at the Liver Cancer Institute, Zhongshan Hospital, Fudan University, Shanghai, China, evaluated whether contrast-enhanced ultrasonography (CEUS) use could identify a correlation between microvessel density (MVD) of HCC and tumor perfusion parameters in human patients. Then, using an animal model, they tested whether CEUS could monitor changes in angiogenesis induced by anti-angiogenesis treatment. The tumor perfusion parameters that CEUS detected include peak intensity, increased peak intensity, increased signal intensity, area under curve, and blood-flow index. These parameters are associated with MVD.
In the animal model experiment, researchers administered a vascular EGFR inhibitor to suppress the motility of human umbilical vein endothelial cells; this significantly delayed tumor growth. Investigators noted that changes in tumor perfusion parameters were detectable 3 days earlier than changes in tumor size. This study has important clinical ramifications, indicating that it may be possible to use CEUS to monitor tumor perfusion and identify changes in tumor size, providing earlier biological evidence on the efficacy of anti-angiogenesis treatment. Researchers believe further study is warranted.


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