The eligibility criteria of liver transplantation (LT) for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) must clearly confirm the prognosis not only from pathological diagnosis but also from pre-operative imaging diagnosis. In the present study, we evaluated published eligibility criteria for LT based on both pre-operative imaging diagnosis and pathological diagnosis using living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) recipients at our hospital by α-smooth muscle actin (SMA)-positive cancer-associated fibroblasts (CAFs) in HCC. The Up-to-seven (Up-to-7), Asan and Tokyo criteria were evaluated, in both overall survival and HCC disease-free survival, to be statistically significantly beneficial criteria to define post-LDLT prognosis. Recipients only within Up-to-7 criteria based on both pre-operative imaging diagnosis and pathological diagnosis survived without HCC recurrence. Recipients with proliferation of α-SMA-positive CAFs in HCC had significantly poorer prognosis. All survival recipients without HCC recurrence, who were above the Up-to-7 criteria in pathological diagnosis, had no proliferation of α-SMA-positive CAFs. As a result of multivariate analysis, the significant independent factors defining prognosis of recipients after LDLT for HCC were Up-to-7 criteria and proliferation of α-SMA-positive CAFs. The ideal eligibility criteria for LDLT with HCC is Up-to-7 criteria and α-SMA-positive CAFs was considered to be an important factor in HCC recurrence. LDLT should be limited to recipients within Up-to-7 criteria or without proliferation of α-SMA-positive CAFs.
Takamura, H., Nakanuma, S., Hayashi, H., Tajima, H., Kakinoki, K., Sakai, S., … Ohta, T. (2013). Evaluation of eligibility criteria in living donor liver transplantation for hepatocellular carcinoma by α-SMA-positive cancer-associated fibroblasts. Oncology Reports, 30(4), 1561–1574. https://doi.org/10.3892/or.2013.2616