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Cancer Metastasis Rev. 2008 Sep;27(3):363-74. doi: 10.1007/s10555-008-9138-7.

Molecular markers of radiation-related normal tissue toxicity.

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Department of Radiation Oncology, James P. Wilmot Cancer Center, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, 601 Elmwood Avenue, Box 647, Rochester, NY 14642, USA.


Over the past five decades, those interested in markers of radiation effect have focused primarily on tumor response. More recently, however, the view has broadened to include irradiated normal tissues-markers that predict unusual risk of side-effects, prognosticate during the prodromal and therapeutic phases, diagnose a particular toxicity as radiation-related, and, in the case of bioterror, allow for tissue-specific biodosimetry. Currently, there are few clinically useful radiation-related biomarkers. Notably, levels of some hormones such as thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) have been used successfully as markers of dysfunction, indicative of the need for replacement therapy, and for prevention of cancers. The most promising macromolecular markers are cytokines: TGFbeta, IL-1, IL-6, and TNFalpha being lead molecules in this class as both markers and targets for therapy. Genomics and proteomics are still in nascent stages and are actively being studied and developed.

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