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Drug Resist Updat. 2006 Aug-Oct;9(4-5):198-210. Epub 2006 Oct 2.

Methods and biomarkers for the diagnosis and prognosis of cancer and other diseases: towards personalized medicine.

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Department of Human Anatomy and Cell Science, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Man, Canada.


The rapid development of new diagnostic procedures, the mapping of the human genome, progress in mapping genetic polymorphisms, and recent advances in nucleic acid- and protein chip technologies are driving the development of personalized therapies. This breakthrough in medicine is expected to be achieved largely due to the implementation of "lab-on-the-chip" technology capable of performing hundreds, even thousands of biochemical, cellular and genetic tests on a single sample of blood or other body fluid. Focusing on a few disease-specific examples, this review discusses selected technologies and their combinations likely to be incorporated in the "lab-on-the-chip" and to provide rapid and versatile information about specific diseases entities. Focusing on breast cancer and after an overview of single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP)-screening methodologies, we discuss the diagnostic and prognostic importance of SNPs. Next, using Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) as an example, we provide a brief overview of powerful and innovative integration of traditional immuno-histochemistry techniques with advanced biophysical methods such as NMR-spectroscopy or Fourier-transformed infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy. A brief overview of the challenges and opportunities provided by protein and aptamer microarrays follows. We conclude by highlighting novel and promising biochemical markers for the development of personalized treatment of cancer and other diseases: serum cytochrome c, cytokeratin-18 and -19 and their proteolytic fragments for the detection and quantitation of malignant tumor mass, tumor cell turn-over, inflammatory processes during hepatitis and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-induced hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis and apoptotic/necrotic cancer cell death.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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