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1.  Interest of preoperative immunonutrition in liver resection for cancer: study protocol of the PROPILS trial, a multicenter randomized controlled phase IV trial 
BMC Cancer  2014;14(1):980.
Malnutrition is an independent risk factor of postoperative morbidity and mortality and it’s observed in 20 to 50% of surgical patients. Preoperative interventions to optimize the nutritional status, reduce postoperative complications and enteral nutrition has proven to be superior to the parenteral one. Moreover, regardless of the nutritional status of the patient, surgery impairs the immunological response, thus increasing the risk of postoperative sepsis. Immunonutrition has been developed to improve the immunometabolic host response in perioperative period and it has been proven to reduce significantly postoperative infectious complications and length of hospital stay in patients undergoing elective gastrointestinal surgery for tumors. We hypothesize that a preoperative oral immunonutrition (ORAL IMPACT®) can reduce postoperative morbidity in liver resection for cancer.
Prospective multicenter randomized placebo-controlled double-blind phase IV trial with two parallel treatment groups receiving either study product (ORAL IMPACT®) or control supplement (isocaloric isonitrogenous supplement - IMPACT CONTROL®) for 7 days before liver resection for cancer. A total of 400 patients will be enrolled. Patients will be stratified according to the type of hepatectomy, the presence of chronic liver disease and the investigator center. The main end-point is to evaluate in intention-to-treat analysis the overall 30-day morbidity. Secondary end-points are to assess the 30-day infectious and non-infectious morbidity, length of antibiotic treatment and hospital stay, modifications on total food intake, compliance to treatment, side-effects of immunonutrition, impact on liver regeneration and sarcopenia, and to perform a medico-economic analysis.
The overall morbidity rate after liver resection is 22% to 42%. Infectious post-operative complications (12% to 23%) increase the length of hospital stay and costs and are responsible for a quarter of 30-day mortality. Various methods have been advocated to decrease the rate of postoperative complications but there is no evidence to support or refute the use of any treatment and further trials are required. The effects of preoperative oral immunonutrition in non-cirrhotic patients undergoing liver resection for cancer are unknown. The present trial is designed to evaluate whether the administration of a short-term preoperative oral immunonutrition can reduce postoperative morbidity in non-cirrhotic patients undergoing liver resection for cancer.
Trial registration NCT02041871.
PMCID: PMC4302113  PMID: 25523036
Liver resection; Hepatectomy; Immunonutrition; Liver metastases; HCC; Cholangiocarcinoma
2.  Bland Embolization Versus Chemoembolization of Hepatocellular Carcinoma Before Transplantation 
There is conflicting literature regarding the superiority of transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) versus bland transarterial embolization (TAE), and this has not been well studied before transplantation. Twenty-five TAE patients were matched in a 1:2 ratio with TACE patients by the initial radiographic tumor size and number in a retrospective, case-controlled study. The patients were otherwise treated according to the same protocols. The method of embolization was chosen on the basis of interventionalist practices at 2 sites within the program. Kaplan-Meier survival analyses at 1 and 3 years were the primary endpoints. There were no significant demographic differences between the groups. The mean adjusted Model for End-Stage Liver Disease scores at transplantation and waiting times were not significantly different between the TAE and TACE patients (MELD scores: 26 ± 3 versus 24 ± 3 points, P = 0.12; waiting times: 13 ± 8 versus 11 ± 10 months, P = 0.43). TAE patients (16%) were less likely than TACE patients (40%) to require 2 procedures (P = 0.04). Explant tumors were completely necrotic for 36% of the TAE patients and for 26% of the TACE patients. The 3-year overall survival rates were 78% for the TAE patients and 74% for the TACE patients (P = 0.66), and the 3-year recurrence-free survival rates were 72% for the TAE patients and 68% for the TACE patients (P = 0.67). On an intention-to-treat basis, there was no significant risk of wait-list dropout associated with TAE or TACE (P = 0.83). In conclusion, there were no significant differences in wait-list dropout or in overall or recurrence-free survival between HCC patients undergoing TAE and HCC patients undergoing TACE before transplantation.
PMCID: PMC4095977  PMID: 24493271
3.  Microvascular Invasion Does Not Predict Long-Term Survival in Hepatocellular Carcinoma up to 2 cm: Reappraisal of the Staging System for Solitary Tumors 
Annals of surgical oncology  2012;20(4):10.1245/s10434-012-2739-y.
Excellent long-term outcomes have been reported recently for patients with small (≤2 cm) hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). However, the significance of microvascular invasion (MVI) in small HCC remains unclear. The purpose of this study was to determine the impact of MVI in small HCC up to 2 cm.
In 1,109 patients with solitary HCC from six major international hepatobiliary centers, the impact of MVI on long-term survival in patients with small HCC (≤2 cm) and patients with tumors larger than 2 cm was analyzed.
In patients with small HCC, long-term survival was not affected by MVI (p = 0.8), whereas in patients with larger HCC, significantly worse survival was observed in patients with MVI (p < 0.0001). In multivariate analysis, MVI (hazard ratio [HR] 1.59; 95 % confidence interval (CI) 1.27–1.99; p < 0.001), elevated alpha-fetoprotein (HR 1.41; 95 % CI 1.11–1.8; p = 0.005), and higher histologic grade (HR 1.29; 95 % CI 1.01–1.64; p = 0.04) were significant predictors of worse survival in patients with HCC larger than 2 cm but were not correlated with long-term survival in small HCC. When the cohort was divided into three groups—HCC ≤2, >2 cm without MVI, and HCC >2 cm with MVI—significant between-group survival difference was observed (p < 0.0001).
Small HCC is associated with an excellent prognosis that is not affected by the presence of MVI. The discriminatory power of the 7th edition of the AJCC classification for solitary HCC could be further improved by subdividing tumors according to size (≤2 vs. >2 cm).
PMCID: PMC3856190  PMID: 23179993
4.  Improved Long-Term Survival after Major Resection for Hepatocellular Carcinoma: A Multicenter Analysis Based on a New Definition of Major Hepatectomy 
Advances in the surgical management of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) have expanded the indications for curative hepatectomy, including more extensive liver resections. The purpose of this study was to examine long-term survival trends for patients treated with major hepatectomy for HCC.
Patients and Methods
Clinicopathologic data for 1,115 patients with HCC who underwent hepatectomy between 1981 and 2008 at five hepatobiliary centers in France, China, and the USA were assessed. In addition to other performance metrics, outcomes were evaluated using resection of ≥4 liver segments as a novel definition of major hepatectomy.
Major hepatectomy was performed in 539 patients. In the major hepatectomy group, median tumor size was 10 cm (range: 1–27 cm) and 22 % of the patients had bilateral lesions. The TNM Stage distribution included 29 % Stage I, 31 % Stage II, 38 % Stage III, and 2 % Stage IV. The postoperative histologic examination indicated that chronic liver disease was present in 35 % of the patients and tumor microvascular invasion was identified in 60 % of the patients. The 90-day postoperative mortality rate was 4 %. After a median follow-up time of 63 months, the 5-year overall survival rate was 40 %. Patients treated with right hepatectomy (n=332) and those requiring extended hepatectomy (n=207) had similar 90-day postoperative mortality rates (4 % and 4 %, respectively, p=0.976) and 5-year overall survival rates (42 % and 36 %, respectively, p=0.523). Postoperative mortality and overall survival rates after major hepatectomy were similar among the participating countries (p>0.1) and improved over time with 5-year survival rates of 30 %, 40 %, and 51 % for the years 1981–1989, 1990–1999, and the most recent era of 2000–2008, respectively (p=0.004). In multivariate analysis, factors that were significantly associated with worse survivals included AFP level >1,000 ng/mL, tumor size >5 cm, presence of major vascular invasion, presence of extrahepatic metastases, positive surgical margins, and earlier time period in which the major hepatectomy was performed.
This multinational, long-term HCC survival analysis indicates that expansion of surgical indications to include major hepatectomy is justified by the significant improvement in outcomes over the past three decades observed in both the East and the West.
PMCID: PMC3880185  PMID: 22948836
Hepatocellular carcinoma; Major hepatectomy; Multicenter study; Long-term survival
5.  Vascular clamping in liver surgery: physiology, indications and techniques 
This article reviews the historical evolution of hepatic vascular clamping and their indications. The anatomic basis for partial and complete vascular clamping will be discussed, as will the rationales of continuous and intermittent vascular clamping.
Specific techniques discussed and described include inflow clamping (Pringle maneuver, extra-hepatic selective clamping and intraglissonian clamping) and outflow clamping (total vascular exclusion, hepatic vascular exclusion with preservation of caval flow). The fundamental role of a low Central Venous Pressure during open and laparoscopic hepatectomy is described, as is the difference in their intra-operative measurements. The biological basis for ischemic preconditioning will be elucidated. Although the potential dangers of vascular clamping and the development of modern coagulation devices question the need for systemic clamping; the pre-operative factors and unforseen intra-operative events that mandate the use of hepatic vascular clamping will be highlighted.
PMCID: PMC2857838  PMID: 20346153
6.  Role of immunosuppression and tumor differentiation in predicting recurrence after liver transplantation for hepatocellular carcinoma: A multicenter study of 412 patients 
AIM: To assess pre-orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT) factors that could be evaluated pre-operatively or controlled post-operatively associated with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) recurrence and disease-free survival after liver transplantation (LT).
METHODS: Four hundred and twelve patients transplanted for HCC between 1988 and 1998 in 14 French centers, who survived the postoperative period were studied. Kaplan Meier estimates were calculated for 24 variables potentially associated with recurrence of HCC. Uni- and multivariate analyses were conducted to identify independent predictors of recurrence.
RESULTS: Overall 5-year disease-free survival was 57.1%. By univariate analysis, variables associated with disease-free survival were: presence of cirrhosis (P = 0.001), etiology of liver disease (P = 0.03), α fetoprotein level (< 200, 200 to 2000, or > 2000; P < 0.0001), γ-GT activity (N, N to 2N or > 2N; P = 0.02), the number of nodules (1, 2-3 or ≥ 4; P = 0.02), maximal diameter of the largest nodule (< 3 cm, 3 to 5 cm or > 5 cm; P < 0.0001), the sum of the diameter of the nodules (< 3 cm, 3 to 5 cm, 5 to 10 cm or >10 cm; P < 0.0001), bi-lobar location (P = 0.01), preoperative portal thrombosis (P < 0.0001), peri-operative treatment of the tumor (P = 0.002) and chemoembolization (P = 0.03), tumor differentiation (P = 0.01), initial type of calcineurin inhibitor (P = 0.003), the use of antilymphocyte antibodies (P = 0.02), rejection episodes (P = 0.003) and period of LT (P < 0.0001). By multivariate analysis, 6 variables were independently associated with HCC recurrence: maximal diameter of the largest nodule (P < 0.0001), time of LT (P < 0.0001), tumor differentiation (P < 0.0001), use of anti-lymphocyte antibody (ATG) or anti-CD3 antibody (OKT3) (P = 0.005), preoperative portal thrombosis (P = 0.06) and the number of nodules (P = 0.06).
CONCLUSION: This study identifies immunosuppression, through the use of ATG or OKT3, as a predictive factor of tumor recurrence, and confirms the prognostic value of tumor differentiation.
PMCID: PMC4087490  PMID: 17143948
Immunosuppression; Hepatocellular carcinoma; Tumor differentiation; Liver transplantation
7.  Successful Arterial Embolisation of Giant Liver Haemangioma 
HPB Surgery  1993;7(2):141-146.
A 28-year old man presented with a symptomatic giant haemangioma. On June 26, 1983, at laparotomy, no resection was attempted because the lesion involved the right lobe of the liver and a part of segments II and III. The patient underwent a right hepatic arterial embolisation with gelatine sponge particles. During follow-up, the patient remained asymptomatic. Five-year review by CT-scan showed a diminution of the size of the haemangioma and hypertrophy of the left lobe. On October 21, 1988, the patient was reoperated on for liver abscess and complete necrosis of the haemangioma. A right hepatectomy was performed. In conclusion, the long-term effect of hepatic arterial embolisation, as demonstrated in our case by regular CT-scans, is useful in cases of diffuse haemangioma as an alternative to hazardous major liver resection. To our knowledge, the long-term effect of hepatic arterial embolisation on symptoms and tumor size have never been reported for giant liver haemangioma.
PMCID: PMC2423696  PMID: 8268105
8.  Segmental Liver Transplantation From Living Donors Report of the Technique and Preliminary Results in Dogs  
HPB Surgery  1990;2(3):189-204.
A technique of orthotopic liver transplantation using a segmental graft from living donors was developed in the dog. Male mongrel dogs weighing 25–30 kg were used as donors and 10–15 kg as recipients. The donor operation consists of harvesting the left lobe of the liver (left medial and left lateral segments) with the left branches of the portal vein, hepatic artery and bile duct, and the left hepatic vein. The grafts are perfused in situ through the left portal branch to prevent warm ischemia. The recipient operation consists of two phases: 1total hepatectomy with preservation of the inferior vena cava using total vascular exclusion of the liver and veno-venous bypass, 2implantation of the graft in the orthotopic position with anastomosis of the left hepatic vein to the inferior vena cava and portal, arterial and biliary reconstruction. Preliminary experiments consisted of four autologous left lobe transplants and nine non survival allogenic left lobe transplants. Ten survival experiments were conducted. There were no intraoperative deaths in the donors and none required transfusions. One donor died of sepsis, but all the other donor dogs survived without complication. Among the 10 grafts harvested, one was not used because of insufficient bile duct and artery. Two recipients died intraoperatively of air embolus and cardiac arrest at the time of reperfusion. Three dogs survived, two for 24 hours and one for 48 hours. They were awake and alert a few hours after surgery, but eventually died of pulmonary edema in 2 cases and of an unknown reason in the other. Four dogs died 2–12 hours postoperatively as a result of hemorrhage for the graft's transected surface. An outflow block after reperfusion was deemed to be the cause of hemorrhage in these cases. On histologic examination of the grafts, there were no signs of ischemic necrosis or preservation damage.
This study demonstrates the technical feasibility of living hepatic allograft donation. It shows that it is possible, in the dog, to safely harvest non ischemic segmental grafts with adequate pedicles without altering the vascularization and the biliary drainage of the remaining liver. We propose that this technique is applicable to human anatomy.
PMCID: PMC2423581  PMID: 2278916
9.  High frequency of telomerase reverse-transcriptase promoter somatic mutations in hepatocellular carcinoma and preneoplastic lesions 
Nature Communications  2013;4:2218.
Somatic mutations activating telomerase reverse-trancriptase promoter were recently identified in several tumour types. Here we identify frequent similar mutations in human hepatocellular carcinomas (59%), cirrhotic preneoplastic macronodules (25%) and hepatocellular adenomas with malignant transformation in hepatocellular carcinomas (44%). In hepatocellular tumours, telomerase reverse-transcripase- and CTNNB1-activating mutations are significantly associated. Moreover, preliminary data suggest that telomerase reverse-trancriptase promoter mutations can increase the expression of telomerase transcript. In conclusion, telomerase reverse-trancriptase promoter mutation is the earliest recurrent genetic event identified in cirrhotic preneoplastic lesions so far and is also the most frequent genetic alteration in hepatocellular carcinomas, arising from both the cirrhotic or non-cirrhotic liver.
Telomerase reverse-trancriptase promoter mutations have been recently found in human melanomas. Here, Nault et al. identify telomerase reverse-trancriptase promoter mutations as the most frequent somatic genetic alterations in hepatocellular carcinomas and as the first mutation identified in cirrhotic preneoplastic lesions.
PMCID: PMC3731665  PMID: 23887712

Results 1-10 (10)