Primary and secondary liver cancer

Liver cancer – which one

When we say liver cancer it can mean different things. The most accurate meaning of liver cancer is a primary cancer originating from liver cells, e.g. hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) – the most usual type of liver cancer, hepatoblastoma (primary liver cancer in children) and other possible types of cancer originating in liver.

On the other hand, tumors with a different origin (from organs other than liver) can also “infect” or infiltrate liver and start growing metastases there and in such a way providing very huge pool of neoplasms in liver. The statistics is not very clear for the exact ratio between secondary and primary cancers in a liver, but there are some hints that allow us to estimate that secondary tumors are 3-5 times more common than primary in liver.

“It is a huge number”! – should be your first impression. But taking in consideration that liver is the favorite metastasizing place for colorectal, pancreas, stomach and even breast cancer, we can look at this number with different glasses.


Steve Jobs

Let’s take a look on a very popular case study – metastasis in liver from pancreas cancer – a very true and dramatic story, almost a detective narration with … Steve Jobs as a guest star.

This is a very impressive and illustrative video not only about this particular  Steve Jobs’ case. There is a lot of information about cancer development in general in it. Take a very good look. Something to think a little extra about is the calculation on when Steve got his cancer started (16th min of the video) – he was only 24 years old! Well… How many of us dare to think that many of us have a cancer started already now (or even some time ago) and ticking as a bomb? Brrrrrrr… Really.



The reader probably knows that DBP currently develops a product called SA033 for the treatment of cancers in liver – very importantly, SA033 targets liver tissue regardless whether the cancer is primary or secondary. This is in direct contrast to “targeted” drugs, which target a specific mechanism in just a primary (liver) cancer. In other words, SA033 is designed not just for treatment of HCC but also for treatment of metastases of CRC, stomach cancer and other metastases occurring in liver.

We think that we could have helped Steve Jobs if he’d have had his case in 2017 and participated in SA033 clinical trials…


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