Diagnostic Value of Arginase-1 and Glypican-3 in Differential Diagnosis of Hepatocellular Carcinoma, Cholangiocarcinoma and Metastatic Carcinoma of Liver

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Background: Hepatocellular carcinoma is the most common primary liver cancer. Pathologic distinction between Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) and adenocarcinoma (Cholangiocarcinoma (CC) and Metastatic Adenocarcinoma (MA)) can be challenging and sometimes requires immunohistochemical panels. Recently, Arginase-1 (ARG-1) and Glypican-3 (GPC-3) have been introduced for differentiation of these tumors. Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine the diagnostic accuracy of ARG-1 and GLP-3 in differential diagnosis of liver tumors. Patients and Methods: Eighty-nine formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue blocks including 43 cases of documented HCCs, 19 cases of documented CC, and 27 cases of MA involving the liver (15 colon, 5 stomach, 3 pancreas, 2 gallbladder, 1 duodenum and 1 ampulla of vater) were evaluated for immunohistochemical expression of ARG-1 and GPC-3. Results: Arginase-1 and GPC-3 demonstrated diffuse staining, as reactivity in > 97% of HCCs, whereas only one (5.3%) and 2 (10.5%) of 19 CC cases show positive staining for GPC-3 and ARG-1, respectively. The expression of both markers in MA showed 6 (22.2%) for ARG-1 and 3 (11.1%) for GPC-3, especially with colorectal origin. Our findings showed a statistically significant difference between ARG-1 and GPC-3 expression in HCC, CC and MA. Conclusions: The findings of this study reveal that both ARG-1 and GPC-3 are helpful IHC markers to separate HCC from CC and MA. Furthermore, ARG-1 shows 100% sensitivity and 82.6% specificity for the diagnosis of HCC whereas GPC-3 demonstrated 97.7% sensitivity and 91.3% specificity for the diagnosis of this tumor.