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Current status and future prospects of biomarkers in the diagnosis of hepatocellular carcinoma

Abstract

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has one of the highest death rates of any cancer in the world, and its incidence is increasing worldwide. Early-stage diagnosis of HCC is thus crucial for medical treatment. Detection of tumor biomarkers is one of the main methods for the early diagnosis of HCC. At present, α-fetoprotein (AFP) is the most practical serum biomarker for HCC diagnosis. However, the diagnostic accuracy of HCC with serum AFP exhibits both sensitivity and specificity far below satisfaction, especially with small sizes of HCC. As a result, the discovery of new biomarkers and/or their combination to enhance both the sensitivity and specificity for laboratory diagnosis of HCC is a crucial goal. With the development of new technology and advances in research, a number of new and specific biomarkers of HCC have been discovered. These biomarkers and their applications for the diagnosis, treatment monitoring and prognosis prediction of HCC, are reviewed in this article.

Int J Biol Markers 2017; 32(4): e361 - e369

Article Type: REVIEW

DOI:10.5301/ijbm.5000299

Authors

Yunsheng Zhao, Qin Gao, Liu Pei, Chunhua Wang, Liang Jin, Fei Liao

Article History

Disclosures

Financial support: This work was supported by the Science and Technology Project of Qinhuangdao, China (201602A108).
Conflict of interest: None of the authors has any financial interest related to this study to disclose.

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Authors

Affiliations

  • Department of Clinical Laboratory, First Hospital of Qinhuangdao, Qinhuangdao - PR China
  • Department of Clinical Laboratory, People’s Hospital of Funing, Qinhuangdao - PR China
  • College of Laboratory Medicine, Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing - PR China

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