Alpha-fetoprotein response after locoregional therapy for hepatocellular carcinoma: Oncologic marker of radiologic response, progression, and survival

Ahsun Riaz, Robert K. Ryu, Laura M. Kulik, Mary F. Mulcahy, Robert J. Lewandowski, Jeet Minocha, Saad M. Ibrahim, Kent T. Sato, Talia Baker, Frank H. Miller, Steven Newman, Reed Omary, Michael Abecassis, Al B. Benson, Riad Salem

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

149 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: Alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) is considered to be an indicator of tumor activity in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). We present a novel correlation of AFP response to radiologic response, time-to-progression (TTP), progression-free survival (PFS), and overall survival (OS) in patients treated with locoregional therapies. Patients and Methods: Four hundred sixty-three patients with HCC were treated with chemoembolization or radioembolization at our institution. One hundred twenty-five patients with baseline AFP higher than 200 ng/mL were studied for this analysis. AFP response was defined as more than 50% decrease from baseline. One hundred nineteen patients with follow-up imaging were studied for the AFP imaging correlation analysis. AFP response was correlated to radiologic response, TTP, PFS, and OS. Multivariate analyses were performed. Results: Eighty-one patients (65%) showed AFP response. AFP response was seen in 26 (55%) of 47 and 55 (70%) of 78 of patients treated with chemoembolization and radioembolization, respectively (P = .12). WHO response was seen in 41 (53%) of 77 and 10 (24%) of 42 of AFP responders and nonresponders, respectively (P = .002). The hazard ratio (HR) for TTP in AFP nonresponders compared with responders was 2.8 (95% CI, 1.5 to 5.1). The HR for PFS was 4.2 (95% CI, 2.4 to 7.2) in AFP nonresponders compared with responders. The HR for OS in AFP nonresponders compared with responders was 5.5 (95% CI, 3.1 to 9.9) and 2.7 (95% CI, 1.6 to 4.6) on univariate and multivariate analyses, respectively. Conclusion: The data presented support the use of AFP response seen after locoregional therapy as an ancillary method of assessing tumor response and survival, as well as an early objective screening tool for progression by imaging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5734-5742
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Volume27
Issue number34
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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