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Theranostics. 2013 Dec 5;3(12):953-63. doi: 10.7150/thno.6615.

Can microRNAs improve the management of lung cancer patients? A clinician's perspective.

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1. Division of Respiratory Medicine and Thoracic Oncology, Department of Internal Medicine V, Thoracic Oncology Centre Munich, Ludwig-Maximilians Universit√§t M√ľnchen, Germany; ; 2. Member of the German Center for Lung Research (DZL CPC-M).


The treatment of patients with lung cancer is increasingly individualised. Rather than treating lung cancer as a single disease, clinicians are often called upon to consider the precise histology and molecular biology of each tumour in addition to the individual characteristics of each patient. Paralleling advances in lung cancer management, advances in the detection of lung cancer are changing practice. Lung cancer screening promises to find disease at a curable stage; however, the high false positive rate in screening trials has clinical and fiscal ramifications which demand attention. Biomarkers able to stratify for the risk of cancer, prognosticate the course of disease, or predict the response to treatment are in increasing demand. This paper summarizes some of the clinical problems faced by those treating lung cancer patients, and examines how knowledge about the role of microRNAs in lung cancer biology may change patient management.


biomarker; early detection; lung cancer; microRNA; predictive marker.; prognostic marker; screening; thoracic oncology; tumor biology

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