Department of Pathology, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
The prognosis after surgical resection of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) remains poor because of a high rate of recurrence. Thus, it is crucial to identify patients with a high risk of recurrence after curative hepatectomy and to develop more effective and targeted treatment strategies to improve disease outcomes. In this study, we investigated the roles of metadherin (MTDH) in the prognosis of HCC.
We investigated MTDH expression using immunohistochemistry in tumor tissue microarrays of 288 primary HCC patients who underwent curative surgical resection.
High MTDH expression was observed in 138 of the 288 HCC cases (47.9%). High MTDH expression was associated with a younger age (p<0.001), higher Edmondson grade (p<0.001), microvascular invasion (p<0.001), higher American Joint Committee on Cancer T stage (p=0.001), and higher α-fetoprotein level (p=0.003). Multivariate analyses revealed that high MTDH expression (p=0.014), higher Barcelona-Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) stage (p<0.001), and Edmondson grade III (p=0.042) were independent predictors of shorter disease-free survival (DFS). Higher BCLC stage (p<0.001) and Edmondson grade III (p=0.047) were also independent predictors of shorter disease-specific survival.
High MTDH expression may be a prognostic predictor of shorter DFS in HCC patients after curative hepatectomy.