Gene expression profiling of gliomas: merging genomic and histopathological classification for personalised therapy

Br J Cancer. 2011 Feb 15;104(4):545-53. doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6606031. Epub 2010 Nov 30.


The development of DNA microarray technologies over the past decade has revolutionised translational cancer research. These technologies were originally hailed as more objective, comprehensive replacements for traditional histopathological cancer classification systems, based on microscopic morphology. Although DNA microarray-based gene expression profiling (GEP) remains unlikely in the near term to completely replace morphological classification of primary brain tumours, specifically the diffuse gliomas, GEP has confirmed that significant molecular heterogeneity exists within the various morphologically defined gliomas, particularly glioblastoma (GBM). Herein, we provide a 10-year progress report on human glioma GEP, with focus on development of clinical diagnostic tests to identify molecular subtypes, uniquely responsive to adjuvant therapies. Such progress may lead to a more precise classification system that accurately reflects the cellular, genetic, and molecular basis of gliomagenesis, a prerequisite for identifying subsets uniquely responsive to specific adjuvant therapies, and ultimately in achieving individualised clinical care of glioma patients.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain Neoplasms / classification*
  • Brain Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Brain Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Brain Neoplasms / therapy
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Genomics / methods*
  • Glioma / classification*
  • Glioma / diagnosis
  • Glioma / genetics*
  • Glioma / therapy
  • Humans
  • Microarray Analysis
  • Molecular Diagnostic Techniques
  • Neoplasm Staging / methods
  • Neoplasm Staging / trends
  • Precision Medicine / methods*
  • Precision Medicine / trends
  • Prognosis
  • Systems Integration