Treating advanced hepatocellular carcinoma: How to get out of first gear
Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols
Hepatocellular carcinoma is a common malignancy with a poor prognosis. Sorafenib is the only systemic therapy known to improve the overall survival of patients with advanced disease. The clinical benefit of sorafenib is modest and the mechanistic basis for its activity is unknown. Four phase 3 clinical trials have failed to improve on sorafenib in the frontline setting and no agent has been shown to impact outcomes after sorafenib failure. Several factors have contributed to this recent stall in drug development but new approaches hold promise and currently are being investigated. This review will focus on the current pipeline of experimental therapeutics for patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma and shed a light on scientific limitations that hamper the advancement of new therapies for this disease, and ways around it.