Morphomolecular Classification Update on Hepatocellular Adenoma, Hepatocellular Carcinoma, and Intrahepatic Cholangiocarcinoma

Venkata S. Katabathina, Lokesh Khanna, Venkateswar R. Surabhi, Marta Minervini, Krishna Shanbhogue, Anil K. Dasyam, Srinivasa R. Prasad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Hepatocellular adenomas (HCAs), hepatocellular carcinomas (HCCs), and intrahepatic cholangiocarcinomas (iCCAs) are a highly heterogeneous group of liver tumors with diverse patho-molecular features and prognoses. High-throughput gene se-quencing techniques have allowed discovery of distinct genetic and molecular underpinnings of these tumors and identified distinct subtypes that demonstrate varied clinicobiologic behav-iors, imaging findings, and complications. The combination of histopathologic findings and molecular profiling form the basis for the morphomolecular classification of liver tumors. Distinct HCA subtypes with characteristic imaging findings and complications include HNF1A–inactivated, inflammatory, β-catenin–activated, β-catenin–activated inflammatory, and sonic hedgehog HCAs. HCCs can be grouped into proliferative and nonproliferative subtypes. Proliferative HCCs include macrotrabecular-massive, TP53-mutated, scirrhous, clear cell, fibrolamellar, and sarcomatoid HCCs and combined HCC-cholangiocarcinoma. Steatohepatitic and β-catenin–mutated HCCs constitute the nonproliferative sub-types. iCCAs are classified as small-duct and large-duct types on the basis of the level of bile duct involvement, with significant dif-ferences in pathogenesis, molecular signatures, imaging findings, and biologic behaviors. Cross-sectional imaging modalities, including multiphase CT and multiparametric MRI, play an essential role in diagnosis, staging, treatment response assessment, and sur-veillance. Select imaging phenotypes can be correlated with genetic abnormalities, and identification of surrogate imaging markers may help avoid genetic testing. Improved understanding of morphomo-lecular features of liver tumors has opened new areas of research in the targeted therapeutics and management guidelines. The purpose of this article is to review imaging findings of select morphomolec-ular subtypes of HCAs, HCCs, and iCCAs and discuss therapeutic and prognostic implications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1338-1357
Number of pages20
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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