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J Surg Oncol. 2008 Sep 1;98(3):207-13. doi: 10.1002/jso.21106.

Aberrant crypt foci as precursors in colorectal cancer progression.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida 32610, USA.


Colorectal cancer progression originates when accumulated genetic and epigenetic alterations cause genomic instability and a malignant phenotype. Subsequent molecular pathway deregulation leads to histopathologic changes that are clinically evident as aberrant crypt foci (ACF) and visualized by high-magnification chromoscopic colonoscopy. ACF are biomarkers of increased colorectal cancer risk, particularly those with dysplastic features. Genetic profiling using genomic instability, loss of heterozygosity, and methylation analysis has revealed a minority population of ACF genotypically analogous to cancer.

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