Toronto Management of Initially Unresectable Liver Metastasis from Colorectal Cancer in a Living Donor Liver Transplant Program

Luckshi Rajendran, Marco Paw Claasen, Ian D. McGilvray, Mark S. Cattral, Anand Ghanekar, Nazia Selzner, Ron Burkes, Erin Winter, Steven Gallinger, Gonzalo Sapisochin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: Living donor liver transplantation (LDLT) is an attractive option for patients with unresectable, bilobar colorectal liver metastases (CRLM). However, it is not available in most centers beyond study protocols. This study describes the interim experience with LDLT for CRLM at a large North American transplant and hepatobiliary center. f. STUDY DESIGN: Adults with unresectable CRLM, receiving systemic chemotherapy, were recruited into a prospective clinical trial. Data on demographics, referral patterns, and clinical characteristics were extracted from October 2016 to February 2023. Patients were divided into 3 groups: transplanted, resected, and control (excluded with continuation of systemic chemotherapy). Overall survival and recurrence-free survival were compared. RESULTS: Eighty-one referred patients were assessed for LDLT: 7 received transplants, 22 underwent resection, and 48 were controls. All had similar preassessment baseline characteristics. Median time from initial assessment to transplantation was 15.4 months. The control population had significantly worse postassessment overall survival than the transplanted population (p = 0.002) and resected population (p < 0.001). The median postoperative follow-up duration was 21.4 months (resection) and 14.8 months (LDLT). There was no difference in overall survival between the transplanted and resected populations (1-year 100% vs 93.8%; 3-year 100% vs 43.3%, p = 0.17). However, recurrence-free survival was superior in the LDLT group (1-year 85.7% vs 11.4%; 3-year 68.6% vs 11.4%, p = 0.012). CONCLUSIONS: Most patients with unresectable CRLM referred for LDLT are deemed ineligible for trial inclusion. However, the excellent oncologic outcomes in patients who meet criteria for LDLT supports its role in highly selected populations. Future results after the trial's completion will inform long-term outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)231-242
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of the American College of Surgeons
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright: Copyright © 2023 by the American College of Surgeons. Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.


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