The incidence of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is rising in many Western countries, but has always been high in Eastern countries. Much of the knowledge that we have about HCC was developed in Asia, particularly in Japan. However, the majority of all HCCs that develop each year arises in China. Over many years of Western medicine, studies from China have not been major contributors. In part, no doubt this was due to restrictions before China opened up to the West, in part to language difficulties, and in part because of a lack of a Western scientific tradition. Of course, this is all changing, and more and more articles in the medical literature are from China. It is appropriate therefore that many of the contributors to the volume on hepatocellular carcinoma are from China, and that Chinese authors are contributing to the solutions to what is a major Chinese problem. In so doing, they also inform those of us in the West who deal with this disease. Just as in the past we have learned from our Japanese colleagues, so we will in future learn from our Chinese colleagues. This book is an excellent start in that direction.
The editors are to be congratulated on persuading such a distinguished panel of authors to contribute to this volume. Many of the authors are well known not only in China, but also elsewhere in Asia and in the West. It has been my personal pleasure to meet a number of these authors.
This book differs from other volumes on HCC that have been published in the recent past in the choice of topics, which reflect a much more experimental emphasis, and a strong emphasis on scientific discovery and analysis. As a Westerner I find the choice of topics no less refreshing than the choice of authors. This book has much to teach us, and I expect that it will be widely read.
Associate Professor of Medicine
Chairman, Canadian Viral Hepatitis Network and Canadian Liver Foundation
University of Toronto and Toronto General Research Institute