It is estimated that 130–170 million people, appro-ximately 2%–3 % of the world’s population, are infected with the hepatitis C virus (HCV) (Shepard et al. 2005). Of the>500,000 new cases of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) that occur each year, approximately 25 % are attributable to HCV infection (Block et al. 2003). In Japan, there are an estimated 880,000 HCV carriers aged 16–69 years, and 33,000 deaths occurred each year be-cause of HCC, 81 % of which were attributed to HCV in-fection (Yoshizawa et al. 2006). Treatments for chronic hepatitis C (CHC) have improved and the sustained virological response (SVR) rate has increased to 73%– 86 % (Fried et al. 2013; Wada et al. 2014). However, HCC still occurs in a large number of HCV carriers. There-fore, the elucidation of factors associated with th
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