Cancer biomarkers--an invitation to the table

Science. 2006 May 26;312(5777):1165-8. doi: 10.1126/science.1125948.


The allure of the emerging genomic technologies in cancer is their ability to generate new biomarkers that predict how individual cancer patients will respond to various treatments. However, productive implementation of cancer biomarkers into patient care will require fundamental changes in how we consider approvals for cancer indications and how we track patient responses. Here we briefly describe ongoing efforts to identify and to validate cancer biomarkers, discuss the technological hurdles that lie ahead, and then focus on the more pressing political and cultural issues that, if left unheeded, could derail many of the anticipated benefits of biomarker research.

MeSH terms

  • Academies and Institutes
  • Biomarkers, Tumor*
  • Biotechnology
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Databases, Factual
  • Drug Industry
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Genomics
  • Humans
  • Intellectual Property
  • Interprofessional Relations
  • Mutation
  • Neoplasms / genetics
  • Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Patient Care Management*
  • Private Sector
  • Proteomics
  • Public Sector


  • Biomarkers, Tumor