Molecular testing in anatomic pathology is going to become more and more important during the next decade as we develop assays that can aid in diagnosis, prognosis, and predicting response to therapy. The anatomic pathologist needs to be familiar with the different assays available but also needs to be able to discern which are going to become standard of care and which will not. Three different types of tumors are reviewed: thyroid cancer, oligodendroglioma, and lung carcinoma. Molecular assays that are currently in use or on the near horizon, including translocation analyses for RET-PTC and PPARgamma-PAX8, point mutation analysis for BRAF and epidermal growth factor receptor, and genetic loss for 1p and 19q, are discussed.
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