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Critical Reviews™ in Oncogenesis
SJR: 0.946 SNIP: 0.503 CiteScore™: 2

ISSN Print: 0893-9675
ISSN Online: 2162-6448

Critical Reviews™ in Oncogenesis

DOI: 10.1615/CritRevOncog.2013007759
pages 391-407

Iron and Hepatic Carcinogenesis

Janina E.E. Tirnitz-Parker
School of Biomedical Sciences, Curtin University, Curtin Health Innovation Research Institute, Perth, School of Medicine and Pharmacology, The University of Western Australia, Fremantle Australia
Amber Glanfield
Hepatic Fibrosis Group, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, PO Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital, Brisbane, Australia
John K. Olynyk
School of Biomedical Sciences, Curtin University, Curtin Health Innovation Research Institute, Institute for Immunology and Infectious Diseases, Murdoch University, Perth, Australia, School of Medicine and Pharmacology, The University of Western
Grant A. Ramm
Hepatic Fibrosis Group, Queensland Institute of Medical Research, PO Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital, Brisbane, Faculty of Health Sciences, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia

ABSTRACT

Iron is an essential co-factor for life; however, a physiologically optimal balance is critical. Too much or too little iron can have detrimental effects on human health. In this article, we explore the relationships between iron and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Iron can act as a modulating co-factor in a range of chronic liver diseases and can accelerate the development of liver injury, fibrosis, cirrhosis, and ultimately HCC. Iron can, however, also act as a sole factor in the causation of liver cirrhosis and HCC in individuals with hereditary hemochromatosis (HH). We overview the regulation of normal iron metabolism and the role of iron in wound healing and associated cell types as well as in pathophysiologies that predispose to HCC. We review how these injury processes are inextricably linked, providing a mechanistic basis for understanding how iron and hepatic injury potentially result in HCC.