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Chemotherapy and Biomarkers

Biomarkers in Colorectal Cancer: Present and Future
  • Francisca E. Marti
  • Mark P. Saunders
Chapter

Abstract

Traditionally, clinicians have relied on histological and radiological parameters to assign prognosis to patients and to predict outcomes. In colorectal cancer, this has classically been represented by the TNM and Dukes’ classification. Although in most cases this is a good estimation of recurrence risk and overall outcome, clinical practice tells us that within each stage of the disease, there is a wide spectrum of outcomes. Important issues like the selection of adjuvant chemotherapy for patients with stage II colorectal cancer remain unanswered. Current chemotherapy regimens and radiotherapy used in the treatment of both early and advanced disease have variable rates of response within populations, and a priori, there is no objective way to predict response. The only exception to this is the recent discovery of the importance of the KRAS status (mutant or wild-type) in treatment with cetuximab, a monoclonal antibody targeting the epidermal growth factor receptor. It is this lack of additional prognostic and predictive information that has driven the research into biomarkers.

Keywords

Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Lynch Syndrome Circulate Tumor Cell BRAF Mutation KRAS Gene 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Abbreviations

5-FU

5-Fluorouracil

ASCO

American Society of Clinical Oncology

CEA

Carcinoembryonic antigen

CRC

Colorectal cancer

CRUK

Cancer Research UK

CTC

Circulating tumor cell

DNA

Deoxyribonucleic acid

EGF

Epidermal growth factor

EGFR

Epidermal growth factor receptor

EGTM

European Group on Tumor Markers

HNPCC

Hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer

IHC

Immunohistochemistry

KRAS

V-Ki-ras2 Kirsten rat sarcoma viral oncogene homolog

MMR

Mismatch repair

MSI

Microsatellite instability

MSS

Microsatellite stable

PCR

Polymerase chain reaction

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Medical OncologyThe Christie Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Paterson Institute for Cancer ResearchManchesterUK
  2. 2.Department of OncologyChristie Hospital NHS Foundation TrustManchesterUK

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