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27-07-2017 | Non-small-cell lung cancer | Book chapter | Article

12. Liquid Biopsy in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC)

Authors: Christian Rolfo, Marta Castiglia, Alessandro Perez, Pablo Reclusa, Patrick Pauwels, Laure Sober, Francesco Passiglia, Antonio Russo

Publisher: Springer International Publishing


Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths worldwide. To date, the gold standard for the molecular analysis of a patient affected by NSCLC is the tissue biopsy. The discovery of activating mutations and rearrangements in specific genes has revolutionized the therapeutic approaches of lung cancer over the last years. For this reason, a strict “molecular follow-up” is mandatory to evaluate patient’s disease evolution. Indeed, liquid biopsy has raised as the “new ambrosia of researchers” as it could help clinicians to identify both prognostic and predictive biomarkers in a more accessible way. Liquid biopsy analysis can be used in different moments starting from diagnosis to relapse, earning multiple clinical meanings, offering thus a noninvasive but valid method to detect actionable mutations. Although the implementation of both exosomes and CTCs in clinical practice is several steps back, new advances and discoveries make them, together with the ctDNA, a very promising tool. In the following chapter we will discuss the recent advances of liquid biopsy in NSCLC highlighting the possible clinical utility of CTCs, ctDNA and exosomes.

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