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J Cancer. 2013;4(3):210-6. doi: 10.7150/jca.5839. Epub 2013 Mar 1.

Serum-based DNA methylation biomarkers in colorectal cancer: potential for screening and early detection.

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  • 11. Department of Pathology and Laboratory Services, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD, USA.


Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most common cause of cancer-related death in the United States. Early identification and treatment of pre-cancerous colorectal lesions, or node-negative CRC are highly effective interventions that substantially reduce disease-specific mortality. Colonoscopy remains a highly effective primary screening tool based on its excellent diagnostic accuracy, and its ability to remove pre-cancerous lesions. However, the nature of the procedure limits compliance with colonoscopy intended for population-based CRC screening. A significant advance in the screening and care of these patients could be realized by blood-based biomarkers, which could accurately identify patients at-risk for CRC development whom might benefit from early and/or more frequent surveillance for disease. We reviewed and herein discuss the potential for serum based DNA methylation biomarkers for screening and early detection of CRC.


Biomarker: Early detection; Colorectal cancer; DNA methylation.; Screening; Serum

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