Santi Cosma e Damiano, Italy
Santi Cosma e Damiano, Italy

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Gion M.,Centro Regionale Biomarcatori | Trevisiol C.,Centro Regionale Biomarcatori | Pregno S.,GRADE Working Group | Fabricio A.S.C.,Centro Regionale Biomarcatori
Biochimica Clinica | Year: 2011

In this document a working definition of circulating cancer biomarkers is provided and discussed within a broader definition of disease biomarkers and their possible classifications. The biomarker families possibly suitable for clinical use on the basis of available evidence are then considered, concluding that only few biomarkers may be helpful in the management of cancer patients. They are well known molecules discovered 20-30 yeas ago, quantitatively related to the tumour burden, encompassing classical "tumor markers" (CEA, AFP, hCG) and glycoproteins discovered by immunologic recognition (CA 125, CA 15.3, CA 19.9). The most relevant characteristics of quoted biomarkers are reported. The poor "cancer specificity" of available biomarkers is discussed, concluding that circulating concentrations of the socalled "tumor" markers are the sum of several variables including (if present) the malignancy. Non-tumor variables potentially responsible of variations in circulating concentrations of biomarkers are reported. They include physiological conditions and life style patterns, diseases other than cancer, and iatrogenic artefacts. The analytical and pre-analytical issues that may interfere with the biomarker determination, including autoantibodies, human antimouse monoclonal antibodies, and the "hook effect", are also examined.


Gion M.,Centro Regionale Biomarcatori | Trevisiol C.,Centro Regionale Biomarcatori | Pregno S.,GRADE Working Group | Fabricio A.S.C.,Centro Regionale Biomarcatori
Biochimica Clinica | Year: 2011

This contribution represents the second of two parts of guidelines for clinical use of tumour biomarkers, reporting in schematic tables the evidence-based information available for different neoplastic pathologies (the first part was published on Biochim Clin 2011;35:394-403). Particularly, the following neoplastic conditions are considered in this document: testicular seminoma and non-seminoma, cervical uterine cancer, ovarian and renal cell carcinomas, breast cancer, melanoma, and neuroendocrine tumors.

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