Genetic Susceptibility to Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Patients with Chronic Hepatitis Virus Infection

Tsai Hsuan Yang, Chi Chan, Po Jiun Yang, Yu Han Huang, Mei Hsuan Lee*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths globally. The risk factors for HCC include chronic hepatitis B and C virus infections, excessive alcohol consumption, obesity, metabolic disease, and aflatoxin exposure. In addition to these viral and environmental risk factors, individual genetic predisposition is a major determinant of HCC risk. Familial clustering of HCC has been observed, and a hereditary factor likely contributes to the risk of HCC development. The familial aggregation may depend on a shared environment and genetic background as well as the interactions of environmental and genetic factors. Genome-wide association studies (GWASs) are one of the most practical tools for mapping the patterns of inheritance for the most common form of genomic variation, single nucleotide polymorphisms. This approach is practical for investigating genetic variants across the human genome, which is affected by thousands of common genetic variants that do not follow Mendelian inheritance. This review article summarizes the academic knowledge of GWAS-identified genetic loci and their association with HCC. We summarize the GWASs in accordance with various chronic hepatitis virus infection statuses. This genetic profiling could be used to identify candidate biomarkers to refine HCC screening and management by enabling individual risk-based personalization and stratification. A more comprehensive understanding of the genetic mechanisms underlying individual predisposition to HCC may lead to improvements in the prevention and early diagnosis of HCC and the development of effective treatment strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number559
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2023


  • genome-wide association study
  • hepatitis B
  • hepatitis C
  • host
  • liver cancer


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