October is Liver Cancer Awareness Month

The liver is one of the largest organs in the body. It filters harmful substances from the blood, produces bile that helps in the digestion of fats, and stores sugar that the body uses for energy.

There are two types of primary liver cancer in adults – hepatocellular carcinoma and cholangiocarcinoma. Hepatocellular carcinoma is the most common type of adult primary liver cancer. It is relatively rare in the United States, although its incidence is rising, principally in relation to the spread of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection.

The National Cancer Institute's Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program estimates that 40,710 new cases of liver and intrahepatic bile duct cancer will be diagnosed in the United States and some 28,920 people are expected to die of primary adult liver cancer in 2017. The five-year survival rate is just 17.6 percent.

Having hepatitis B, hepatitis C, or cirrhosis are significant risk factors for adult primary liver cancer. Liver cancer is more common in men than women, and among Asian/Pacific Islander and American Indian/Alaska Native populations.

October is Liver Cancer Awareness Month.

What is the AACR Doing in this Area?

Grants and Awards

The AACR partnership with Bayer Healthcare to offer a fellowship opportunity in the field of hepatocellular carcinoma research entered its second year. The 2017 AACR-Bayer Hepatocellular Carcinoma Research Fellowship was awarded to Irun Bhan, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital, for his study, "Transcriptomics of Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Diagnosis and Immunotherapy."

The 2017 AACR NextGen Grant for Transformative Cancer Research also went to a liver-cancer focused study. Sidi Chen, PhD, of Yale University, was awarded the grant for his project, "Versatile Tools for Autochthonous Screening in Liver Cancer."

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) is a 501c3 registered nonprofit organization with offices at 615 Chestnut Street, 17th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19106 | 215.440.9300