BioScience Trends. 2022;16(2):130-141. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.2022.01019)

Conversion therapy with an immune checkpoint inhibitor and an antiangiogenic drug for advanced hepatocellular carcinoma: A review

Tang HW, Cao YB, Jian YP, Li XR, Li JF, Zhang WW, Wan T, Liu Z, Tang W, Lu SC


Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has been the fifth most common malignancy worldwide and is the second most common cause of tumor-related mortality globally. In China, a high proportion of patients with HCC present with an advanced stage of the disease, so HCC is a major challenge to the healthcare system and a substantial socioeconomic burden. The last decade has witnessed an expansion of the treatment landscape for HCC. Various approaches have been explored as potential conversion therapies for advanced HCC. Despite controversies, mounting data have indicated that successful conversion therapy followed by subsequent surgery is achievable in a population of patients with advanced HCC. This conversion therapy is a safe and promising treatment strategy to prolong long-term outcomes. Based on preliminary research, this review has assembled and summarized current clinical experience with and evidence of the efficacy of conversion therapies followed by subsequent surgery for advanced HCC.

KEYWORDS: hepatocellular carcinoma, conversion therapy, immune checkpoint inhibitors, antiangiogenic drugs, subsequent surgery

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