Prognostic and Predictive Molecular Markers in Cholangiocarcinoma

Cancers (Basel). 2022 Feb 17;14(4):1026. doi: 10.3390/cancers14041026.


Cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) is the second most common primary liver cancer and subsumes a heterogeneous group of malignant tumors arising from the intra- or extrahepatic biliary tract epithelium. A rising mortality from CCA has been reported worldwide during the last decade, despite significant improvement of surgical and palliative treatment. Over 50% of CCAs originate from proximal extrahepatic bile ducts and constitute the most common CCA entity in the Western world. Clinicopathological characteristics such as lymph node status and poor differentiation remain the best-studied, but imperfect prognostic factors. The identification of prognostic molecular markers as an adjunct to traditional staging systems may not only facilitate the selection of patients who would benefit the most from surgical, adjuvant or palliative treatment strategies, but may also be helpful in defining the aggressiveness of the disease and identifying patients at high-risk for tumor recurrence. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of currently known molecular prognostic and predictive markers and their role in CCA.

Keywords: biliary tract cancer; biomarker; cholangiocarcinoma; predictive; prognosis; targeted therapy.

Publication types

  • Review