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Diagnostics Liquid biopsy, Oncology, Genetics and epigenetics

At the Speed of Liquid (Biopsy)

The lung and thoracic oncology spotlight is increasingly shining on liquid biopsy. Genomic profiling is a pivotal tool for non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) and tissue-based analysis is the preferred method of investigation – despite being invasive and only providing a single one-place snapshot of the tumor. In recent years, the liquid biopsy has begun to challenge the standard approach, offering a minimally invasive – and spatially and temporally representative – method of investigating the tumor gene profile.

Nir Peled and colleagues explored the potential role of liquid biopsy for lung cancer patients by investigating the difference between next-generation sequencing (NGS)-based liquid biopsy and tissue-based analysis. The researchers focused on time to report and time to treat in treatment-naive NSCLC patients (1). In their pilot study, they ordered both types of biopsies for patients and found that the turnaround time for liquid biopsy results was 10 days faster than for tissue results, with actionable genes identified in 11 tissue biopsies and 14 identified by liquid biopsy.

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About the Author

Olivia Gaskill

During my undergraduate degree in psychology and Master’s in neuroimaging for clinical and cognitive neuroscience, I realized the tasks my classmates found tedious – writing essays, editing, proofreading – were the ones that gave me the greatest satisfaction. I quickly gathered that rambling on about science in the bar wasn’t exactly riveting for my non-scientist friends, so my thoughts turned to a career in science writing. At Texere, I get to craft science into stories, interact with international experts, and engage with readers who love science just as much as I do.

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