Genes & Cancer

The liquid biopsy in lung cancer

Junaid Ansari1,2, Jungmi W. Yun2, Anvesh R. Kompelli3, Youmna E. Moufarrej3, Jonathan S. Alexander2, Guillermo A. Herrera4 and Rodney E. Shackelford4

1 Feist Weiller Cancer Center, LSU Health Shreveport, LA, USA

2 Department of Molecular and Cellular Physiology, LSU Health Sciences Center, Shreveport, LA, USA

3 School of Medicine, LSU Health Shreveport, Shreveport, LA, USA

4 Department of Pathology, LSU Health Shreveport, Shreveport, LA, USA


Rodney Shackelford, email:

Keywords: circulating tumor cells, circulating cell-free tumor DNA, liquid biopsy, tumor educated platelets, epidermal growth factor receptor

Received: December 16, 2016 Accepted: January 13, 2017 Published: January 18, 2017


The incidence of lung cancer has significantly increased over the last century, largely due to smoking, and remains the most common cause of cancer deaths worldwide. This is often due to lung cancer first presenting at late stages and a lack of curative therapeutic options at these later stages. Delayed diagnoses, inadequate tumor sampling, and lung cancer misdiagnoses are also not uncommon due to the limitations of the tissue biopsy. Our better understanding of the tumor microenvironment and the systemic actions of tumors, combined with the recent advent of the liquid biopsy, may allow molecular diagnostics to be done on circulating tumor markers, particularly circulating tumor DNA. Multiple liquid biopsy molecular methods are presently being examined to determine their efficacy as surrogates to the tumor tissue biopsy. This review will focus on new liquid biopsy technologies and how they may assist in lung cancer detection, diagnosis, and treatment.

PII: 127