Polymorphism AGT2 (rs4762) is involved in the development of dermatologic events: Proof-of-concept in hepatocellular carcinoma patients treated with sorafenib

Víctor Sapena, Massimo Iavarone, Loreto Boix, Floriana Facchetti, Maria Guarino, Marco Sanduzzi Zamparelli, Alessandro Granito, Esther Samper, Mario Scartozzi, Josep Corominas, Giorgia Marisi, Alba Díaz, Andrea Casadei-Gardini, Laura Gramantieri, Pietro Lampertico, Filomena Morisco, Ferran Torres, Jordi Bruix, María Reig*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


BACKGROUND Dermatologic adverse events (DAEs) are associated with a better outcome in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) irrespective of the therapeutic agent received. The exact mechanisms associated with the development of DAEs are unknown although several studies point to direct toxicity of tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) to the skin or an immune-mediated reaction triggered by the oncologic treatment. As is the case in other conditions, individual genetic variants may partially explain a higher risk of DAEs. AIM To evaluate the contribution of several gene variants to the risk of developing DAEs in HCC patients treated with TKIs. METHODS We first analyzed 27 single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) from 12 genes selected as potential predictors of adverse event (AE) development in HCC patients treated with sorafenib [Barcelona Clinic Liver Cancer 1 (BCLC1) cohort]. Three additional cohorts were analyzed for AGT1 (rs699) and AGT2 (rs4762) polymorphisms-initially identified as predictors of DAEs: BCLC2 (n= 79), Northern Italy (n= 221) and Naples (n= 69) cohorts, respectively. The relation between SNPs and DAEs and death were assessed by univariate and multivariate Cox regression models, and presented with hazard ratios and their 95% confidence intervals (95%CI). RESULTS The BCLC1 cohort showed that patients with arterial hypertension (AHT) (HR = 1.61; P value = 0.007) and/or AGT SNPs had an increased risk of DAEs. Thereafter, AGT2 (rs4762) AA genotype was found to be linked to a statistically significant increased probability of DAEs (HR = 5.97; P value = 0.0201, AA vs GG) in the Northern Italy cohort by multivariate analysis adjusted for BCLC stage, ECOG-PS, diabetes and AHT. The value of this genetic marker was externally validated in the cohort combining the BCLC1, BCLC2 and Naples cohorts [HR = 3.12 (95%CI: 1.2-8.14), P value = 0.0199, AGT2 (rs4762) AA vs AG genotype and HR = 2.73 (95%CI: 1.18-6.32) P value = 0.0188, AGT2 (rs4762) AA vs GG genotype]. None of the other gene variants tested were found to be associated with the risk of DAE development. CONCLUSION DAE development in HCC patients receiving TKIs could be explained by the AGT2 (rs4762) gene variant. If validated in other anti-oncogenic treatments, it might be considered a good prognosis marker.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1438-1458
Number of pages21
JournalWorld Journal of Hepatology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 27 Jul 2022


  • AGT1 (rs699)
  • AGT2 (rs4762)
  • Early DAE
  • Hcc
  • Single-nucleotide polymorphisms
  • Tyrosine kinase inhibitors


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