Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), which represents 90% of all primary liver cancers, is the fifth most common cancer and the third cause of cancer mortality rate. It is a complex disease with a poor prognosis. Incidence and mortality rates are increasing in many geographical regions, indicating a need for better management strategies. Chronic inflammation is the major driving factors for HCC development, which typically develops on the background of chronic liver disease (CLD). Currently, a large body of literature has focused on the key role of the gut-liver axis as the major pathophysiological mechanism of hepatic disease severity and HCC development. This chapter will describe the role of gut microbiota, inflammation, and intestinal barrier dysfunction-associated mechanism in the progression of HCC. In particular, enteric dysbiosis, tight junction, and inflammatory mediators in the pathogenesis of liver cancer will be discussed. Furthermore, this chapter will identify the possible potential therapeutic approach for the control of gut bacterial overgrowth, inflammation and restoration of eubiosis, and tight junction integrity in HCC.
Part of the book: Liver Pathology