Hepatitis B burden could place China at an elevated risk of liver cancer

By Isabel Cameron

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images
© Getty Images

Related tags Hepatitis b Cancer Liver China

Hepatitis B (HBV) has long been known as one of the biggest risk factors for primary liver cancer.

Liver cancer and cirrhosis brought on by chronic hepatitis account for the vast majority of fatalities in China, that has been associated with a high incidence of HBV infection worldwide.

Against this backdrop, China’s hepatitis B tests market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of around 3% between 2023 and 2030, forecasts data and analytics company GlobalData.

The research reveals that China’s hepatitis B tests market accounts for over 19% of the Asia-Pacific (APAC) market in 2023 due to the country's steadily rising incident cases, which are anticipated to reach 1 million in 2026.

The danger of chronic carriers, including liver cancer, is the most significant issue with HBV infection. Recently, the National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) in China has given approval to Laboratory for Advanced Medicine & Health Group (LAMH), a sister business of Helio Genomics, for its cell-free DNA-based liver cancer detection test, making it the first of its type.

Particularly designed for the genetic make-up of the Asia-Pacific population, this is anticipated to alleviate significant healthcare issues faced by the Chinese people.

Shreya Jain, medical devices analyst at GlobalData, said: “For patients diagnosed with liver cancer, delays in diagnosis and therapeutic follow-up can allow for significant tumor growth and potentially lead to fewer alternatives for effective treatment. Additionally, a variety of problems, such as low sensitivity and insufficient diagnostic results for obese people, make standard screening methods like imaging tests, MRIs, and ultrasound examinations less effective.”

The HelioLiver test outperforms conventional tests in terms of performance by combining information from cell-free DNA methylation testing with information from protein tumor markers and other clinical data. An increased chance of survival and enhanced accessibility to curative treatment options are two important benefits of early liver cancer discovery for patients.

Jain concludes: “HBV infection which is thought to play a significant role in the World Health Organization's (WHO) 2030 target of eradicating the HBV as a danger to world health continues to be the main contributors to the burden of liver cancer in China. Thus, an early diagnosis of cancer has the potential to transform patient survival and widely seen as an area of unmet need. The integration of novel techniques is likely to emerge as the trend for early liver cancer detection.”

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