Immunotherapy for hepatocellular carcinoma: recent advances and future perspectives

Immunotherapy for hepatocellular carcinoma: recent advances and future perspectives.

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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Official URL:
Journal or Publication Title: Therapeutic Advances in Medical Oncology
Volume: 11
Page Range: p. 175883591986269
Date: 2019
Divisions: Liver Injury and Cancer
Depositing User: General Admin
Identification Number: 10.1177/1758835919862692
ISSN: 1758-8359
Date Deposited: 04 Jan 2021 23:46

The introduction of immunotherapies has been a major development in the treatment of many advanced cancers, including hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We are entering a new era of systemic therapy for advanced HCC associated with an explosion of clinical trial activity. Data from phase I/II studies of checkpoint inhibitors in advanced HCC have been promising, with durable objective response rates of approximately 20% seen (in both first- and second-line settings) and acceptable safety profiles (including immune-mediated hepatitis). Phase III studies evaluating anti-programmed cell death protein 1 (anti-PD-1) and anti-programmed cell death ligand 1 (anti-PD-L1) antibodies compared with sorafenib are already underway. The potential synergistic effects of anti-PD-1/anti-PD-L1 when used in combination with agents against other checkpoint molecules, systemic therapies, as well as conventional surgical and locoregional therapies are also being explored in upcoming clinical trials. Aside from this, other strategies to harness the immune system, including chimeric antigen receptor-engineered T cells, natural killer cell therapies, and peptide vaccines directed against HCC antigens have entered phase I/II studies. Current limitations of immunotherapies and areas of future research include the accurate assessment and prediction of tumor response, overcoming the immunosuppressive effects of a hypoxic microenvironment, and the management of immune-related hepatitis in patients who already have limited liver reserve.

Xu, Weiqi
Liu, Ken
Chen, Minjiang
Sun, Jin-Yu
McCaughan, Geoffrey W
Lu, Xiao-Jie
Ji, Jiansong
Last Modified: 04 Jan 2021 23:46

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