DR-70 immunoassay for the surveillance of hepatocellular carcinoma

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Background and Aim:|

Although alpha-fetoprotein (AFP) is a widely used serological marker for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), its utility is limited due to its unsatisfactory sensitivity. Meanwhile, a newly developed immunoassay—DR-70—has been reported to have a good sensitivity for HCC in a small-scale study. The aim of this study was to determine the clinical value of DR-70 for the surveillance of HCC.


Serum levels of DR-70 and AFP were measured in 103 patients with HCC, 50 healthy volunteers, and 33 patients with chronic liver disease. In addition, we investigated the prognostic value of DR-70 in patients with HCC correlating with the clinical staging—Cancer of the Liver Italian Program (CLIP) score and Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer (BCLC) classification.


Based on the receiver operating characteristic curve with area under the curve of 0.836, the DR-70 cut-off value for detecting HCC was determined to be 0.75 μg/mL. DR-70 provided a sensitivity of 81.6% and a specificity of 77.1%, and correlated well with the CLIP score and BCLC classification. The combination of DR-70 and AFP increased the sensitivity to 91.2%. The prognosis for patients with HCC with DR-70 level > 0.75 μg/mL was worse than that for those with DR-70 ≤ 0.75 μg/mL. Among the patients with early stage HCC (CLIP score 0–2), DR-70 > 0.75 μg/mL independently predicted a poor survival.


DR-70 immunoassay is complementary to AFP for the detection of HCC and has a good correlation with clinical staging and prognosis.

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