Improving the diagnosis and management of neuroendocrine tumors: utilizing new advances in biomarker and molecular imaging science

Neuroendocrinology. 2013;98(1):16-30. doi: 10.1159/000348832. Epub 2013 Jun 28.


Neuroendocrine tumors (NET) are malignant solid tumors that arise in hormone-secreting tissue of the diffuse neuroendocrine system or endocrine glands. Although traditionally understood to be a rare disease, the incidence and prevalence of NET have increased greatly in the past 3 decades. However, during this time, progress in diagnosis and outcome of NET has generally been modest. In order to achieve improved outcome in NET, a better understanding of NET biology combined with more reliable serum markers and better techniques to identify tumor localization and small lesions are needed. Although some NET biomarkers exist, sensitive and specific markers that predict tumor growth and behavior are generally lacking. In addition, the integration of new molecular imaging technologies in patient diagnosis and follow-up has the potential to enhance care. To discuss developments and issues required to improve diagnostics and management of NET patients, with specific focus on the latest advances in molecular imaging and biomarker science, 17 global leaders in the fields of NET, molecular imaging and biomarker technology gathered to participate in a 2-day meeting hosted by Prof. Kjell Öberg at the University of Uppsala in Sweden. During this time, findings were presented regarding methods with potential prognostic and treatment applications in NET or other types of cancers. This paper describes the symposium presentations and resulting discussions.

Publication types

  • Congress
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor / metabolism*
  • Disease Management
  • Humans
  • Molecular Imaging / standards
  • Molecular Imaging / trends*
  • Neuroendocrine Tumors / diagnosis*
  • Neuroendocrine Tumors / metabolism*
  • Neuroendocrine Tumors / therapy
  • Sweden


  • Biomarkers, Tumor