High post-treatment absolute monocyte count predicted hepatocellular carcinoma risk in HCV patients who failed peginterferon/ribavirin therapy.Tumour Biol. 2016 Jun; 37(6):7129-37.TB
Salient studies have investigated the association between host inflammatory response and cancer. This study was conducted to test the hypothesis that peripheral absolute monocyte counts (AMC) could impart an increased risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) development in hepatitis C virus (HCV)-infected patients after a failed peginterferon/ribavirin (PR) combination therapy. A total of 723 chronic HCV-infected patients were treated with PR, of which 183 (25.3 %) patients did not achieve a sustained virological response (non-SVR). Post-treatment AMC values were measured at 6 months after end of PR treatment. Fifteen (2.8 %) of 540 patients with an SVR developed HCC during a median follow-up period of 41.4 months, and 14 (7.7 %) of 183 non-SVR patients developed HCC during a median follow-up of 36.8 months (log rank test for SVR vs. non-SVR, P = 0.002). Cox regression analysis revealed that post-treatment AFP level (HR 1.070; 95 % CI = 1.024-1.119, P = 0.003) and post-treatment aspartate aminotransferase (AST)-to-platelet ratio index (APRI) ≥0.5 (HR 4.401; 95 % CI = 1.463-13.233, P = 0.008) were independent variables associated with HCC development for SVR patients. For non-SVR patients, diabetes (HR 5.750; 95 % CI = 1.387-23.841, P = 0.016), post treatment AMC ≥370 mm(-3) (HR 5.805; 95 % CI = 1.268-26.573, P = 0.023), and post-treatment APRI ≥1.5 (HR 10.905; 95 % CI = 2.493-47.697, P = 0.002) were independent risks associated with HCC. In conclusion, post-treatment AMC has a role in prognostication of HCC development in HCV-infected patients who failed to achieve an SVR after PR combination therapy.