Benign hepatocellular nodules: What have we learned using the patho-molecular classification

Christine Sempoux, Charissa Chang, Annette Gouw, Laurence Chiche, Jessica Zucman-Rossi, Charles Balabaud, Paulette Bioulac-Sage

Research output: Contribution to journalShort surveypeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Focal nodular hyperplasia (FNH) and hepatocellular adenoma (HCA) are benign hepatocellular tumors that develop most frequently in females and in non-cirrhotic livers. HCA are prone to bleed and to transform into hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Four major subgroups of HCA have been thus far identified: HNF1α mutated HCA, inflammatory HCA (IHCA), β-catenin mutated HCA (b-HCA and b-IHCA), based on mutations in specific oncogenes and tumor suppressors. B-HCA and b-IHCA are strongly associated with HCC transformation. Benign hepatocellular tumors can be classified using immunohistochemistry (LFABP, CRP, GS, b-catenin). Analysis of HCA phenotypes has led to the identification of patients at risk of HCC transformation and therefore improved the indications provided by invasive and non-invasive diagnostic techniques, such as biopsies and MRI. These recent advances have broadened the clinical scope of HCA in various conditions, such as their presence in males, in obese patients, in patients suffering from liver vascular disorders, genetic diseases. However, specific immunohistochemistry has shown limitations particularly for the identification of b-HCA, thereby, outlining the importance of molecular studies to improve the diagnosis/prognosis of HCA. If evaluation of prognosis and treatment has benefited from these advances, much more needs to be done to obtain guidelines for good clinical practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)322-327
Number of pages6
JournalClinics and Research in Hepatology and Gastroenterology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Sep 2013


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