Predictive and prognostic biomarkers in colorectal cancer
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- Van Deusen, J. & Hsu, D.S. Front. Biol. (2011) 6: 482. doi:10.1007/s11515-011-1158-y
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Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer and the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the United States. Three quarters of patients diagnosed with colorectal cancer will have early stage disease and despite surgical resection for curative intent, approximately 20%–25% of patients will recur with their disease within five years. The other 25% will present with advanced or metastatic disease and clinicians are faced with the challenge of choosing the most appropriate therapy for individual patients. Despite multiple treatment options which are now available and concomitant improvements in survival, advanced colorectal cancer remains universally fatal. The challenge for clinicians is to identify prognostic and predictive biomarkers that can assist in tailoring available treatments for an individual patient to improve clinical outcomes. This review will summarize current and future biomarkers in colorectal cancer and discuss their utility in managing patient care.