Liver cancer - research funded

Primary liver cancer starts in the liver when a malignant tumour or tumours are found in the liver tissue. There are different types of primary liver cancer:

  • Infection with hepatitis B is the biggest known risk factor for developing primary liver cancer.
  • Secondary cancer in the liver is cancer that started in another part of the body but has spread (metastasised) to the liver.

Most cancers can spread to the liver, but the most common ones start in the digestive system (large bowel, pancreas, oesophagus and stomach). Digestive cancers often spread to the liver because blood containing cancer cells from the digestive organs passes through the liver first and can lodge there.


About 400 Victorians are diagnosed with liver cancer every year.

Research funded

More than $570,000 has been given to fund research specifically into liver cancer.

In addition, more than $14.5 million has been spent on research projects looking into the detection and treatment of all tumour types (including liver).

Overall, Cancer Council Victoria has funded $46 million worth of extramural research since 2003.

Cancer Council Victoria has also spent more than $1.3 million in the past four years on discovering more about the causes of less common cancers such as this one, as part of the Forgotten Cancers Project.

More on external research funded per tumour type.

Updated: 03 Dec, 2014