Exploitation of Gene Expression and Cancer Biomarkers in Paving the Path to Era of Personalized Medicine

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Cancer therapy agents have been used extensively as cytotoxic drugs against tissue or organ of a specific type of cancer. With the better understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying carcinogenesis and cellular events during cancer progression and metastasis, it is now possible to use targeted therapy for these molecular events. Targeted therapy is able to identify cancer patients with dissimilar genetic defects at cellular level for the same cancer type and consequently requires individualized approach for treatment. Cancer therapy begins to shift steadily from the traditional approach of “one regimen for all patients” to a more individualized approach, through which each patient will be treated specifically according to their specific genetic defects. Personalized medicine accordingly requires identification of indicators or markers that guide in the decision making of such therapy to the chosen patients for more effective therapy. Cancer biomarkers are frequently used in clinical practice for diagnosis and prognosis, as well as identification of responsive patients and prediction of treatment response of cancer patient. The rapid breakthrough and development of microarray and sequencing technologies is probably the main tool for paving the way toward “individualized biomarker-driven cancer therapy” or “personalized medicine”. In this review, we aim to provide an updated knowledge and overview of the current landscape of cancer biomarkers and their role in personalized medicine, emphasizing the impact of genomics on the implementation of new potential targeted therapies and development of novel cancer biomarkers in improving the outcome of cancer therapy.




Kamel, H. F. M., & Al-Amodi, H. S. A. B. (2017, August 1). Exploitation of Gene Expression and Cancer Biomarkers in Paving the Path to Era of Personalized Medicine. Genomics, Proteomics and Bioinformatics. Beijing Genomics Institute. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gpb.2016.11.005

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