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Patient-derived tumor organoids for personalized medicine in a rare case of hepatocellular carcinoma with neuroendocrine differentiation.

We report the case of a 74-year-old man with a very rare subtype of hepatocellular carcinoma with neuroendocrine differentiation (HCC-NED). The patient presented with two independent tumors, a gastrointestinal stromal tumor in the stomach and a hepatocellular carcinoma in the liver. Both tumors were surgically removed in curative intent. Histopathological work-up of the liver tumor revealed poorly differentiated hepatocellular carcinoma (Edmondson-Steiner grade IV) with diffuse expression of neuroendocrine markers synaptophysin (SYP) and chromogranin (CHGA). Three months after resection, multifocal recurrence of the HCC with neuroendocrine differentiation (HCC-NED) was observed. In the meantime, tumor organoids have been generated from the resected HCC-NED and extensively characterized. Sensitivity to a number of drugs approved for the treatment of HCC or neuroendocrine carcinomas was tested in vitro. Based on their in vitro efficacy, etoposide and carboplatin were used as first line palliative combination treatment. Because genomic analysis revealed a NTRK1-mutation (kinase domain) and tumor organoids were sensitive to entrectinib, a pan-TRK inhibitor, the patient received entrectinib as second line therapy. After only two weeks, treatment had to be discontinued due to deterioration of the patient’s general condition. In conclusion, we demonstrate for the first time that preclinical drug testing using organoids is feasible in selected HCC cases.

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Dataset ID Description Technology Samples
EGAD00001008430 Illumina NovaSeq 6000 3
Publications Citations
Patient-derived tumor organoids for personalized medicine in a patient with rare hepatocellular carcinoma with neuroendocrine differentiation: a case report.
Commun Med (Lond) 2: 2022 80