Early detection and therapeutics

Mol Oncol. 2019 Mar;13(3):599-613. doi: 10.1002/1878-0261.12458. Epub 2019 Feb 20.


Early detection, including cancer screening and surveillance, is emerging as one of the most important topics in modern oncology. Because symptomatic presentation remains the predominant route to cancer diagnosis, there is a growing interest in developing techniques to detect the disease at an early, curative stage. Moreover, growing understanding of cancer biology has paved the way for prevention studies with the focus on therapeutic interventions for premalignant conditions. Where there is a recognisable precursor stage, such as a colorectal adenoma or Barrett's metaplasia, the removal of abnormal tissue prevents the development of cancer and enables stratification of the patient to a high-risk group requiring further surveillance. Here, we provide a review of the available technologies for early diagnosis and minimally-invasive treatment.

Keywords: cancer screening; colorectal cancer; endoscopy; gastric cancer; oesophageal cancer; preneoplastic conditions.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor / blood
  • Early Detection of Cancer*
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / blood
  • Neoplasms / diagnosis*
  • Neoplasms / diagnostic imaging
  • Neoplasms / therapy*


  • Biomarkers, Tumor