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J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2017 May;32(5):1100-1106. doi: 10.1111/jgh.13647.

Insulin resistance and the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma in chronic hepatitis B patients.

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Department of Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, School of Medicine, Sungkyunkwan University, Seoul, Korea.



We analyzed whether insulin resistance (IR) assessed by homeostasis model assessment (HOMA2-IR) index can stratify hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) risk in patients with chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection.


A retrospective cohort of 1696 chronic HBV-infected patients (age: 50.0 ± 7.8 years, men = 964 [56.8%]) who underwent detailed health checkup program including C-peptide and fasting blood glucose measurement and followed up for more than a year were analyzed.


During a median follow-up of 5.0 years (range, 1.0-10.5 years), 24 patients (1.4%) developed HCC. The HCC incidence rate was higher for patients with higher HOMA2-IR value than those with lower HOMA2-IR value (1.7% vs 0.5% for HOMA2-IR >1.200 vs ≤1.200, P = 0.009). HOMA2-IR was a significant factor associated with HCC development in multivariable-adjusted model (HR [95% CI]: 3.25 [1.13-9.31], adjusted for age, sex, cirrhosis, and HBV DNA levels). The association between HOMA2-IR and HCC was markedly attenuated and became no longer statistically significant (HR [95% CI]: 1.93 [0.57-6.51]) when further adjusted for obesity, hypertension, and diabetes. In subgroup analysis, HOMA2-IR value was an independent factor associated with HCC in patients without overt metabolic abnormalities (hypertension, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome) but not for those with overt metabolic abnormalities.


Insulin resistance assessed by HOMA2 was associated with the risk of HCC, indicating that HOMA2-IR can be a useful tool for stratifying the risk of HCC in chronic HBV-infected patients, particularly in patients without overt metabolic abnormalities.


HOMA2-IR; hepatitis B; hepatocellular carcinoma; insulin resistance

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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