Prospective randomized pilot study of Y90 +/- sorafenib as bridge to transplantation in hepatocellular carcinoma

Laura Kulik, Michael Vouche, Sean Koppe, Robert J. Lewandowski, Mary F. Mulcahy, Daniel Ganger, Ali Habib, Jennifer Karp, Patrice Al-Saden, Mario Lacouture, Jonathan Cotliar, Michael Abecassis, Talia Baker, Riad Salem*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Scopus citations


Background & Aims To investigate the safety and adverse event profile of sorafenib plus radioembolization (Y90) compared to Y90 alone in patients awaiting liver transplantation. Methods 20 patients with HCC were randomized to Y90 alone (Group A) or Y90 + sorafenib (Group B). Adverse events, dose reductions, and peri-transplant complications were assessed. Results All patients in the sorafenib group necessitated dose reductions. Seventeen of 20 patients underwent liver transplantation; median time-to-transplant was 7.8 months (range: 4.2-20.3) and similar between groups (p = 0.35). In the sorafenib group, there were 4/8 peri-transplant (<30 days) biliary complications (p = 0.029) and 3/8 acute rejections (p = 0.082); there were none in the Y90-only group. Survival rates were 70% (Group A) and 72% (Group B) at 3 years (p = 0.57). Conclusions The addition of sorafenib to Y90 necessitated dose reductions in all patients awaiting transplantation. Preliminary data suggest that the combination was associated with more peri-transplant biliary complications and potentially trended towards more acute rejections. Caution should be exercised when considering sorafenib in the transplant setting. Further investigation is warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)309-317
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Hepatology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2014


  • Hepatocellular carcinoma
  • Radioembolization
  • Sorafenib
  • Transplantation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology


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