Gastric cancer and genomics: review of literature

J Gastroenterol. 2022 Aug;57(8):505-516. doi: 10.1007/s00535-022-01879-3. Epub 2022 Jun 25.


Gastric cancer (GC) is a major health concern in many countries. GC is a heterogeneous disease stratified by histopathological differences. However, these variations are not used to determine GC management. Next-generation sequencing (NGS) technologies have become widely used, and cancer genomic analysis has recently revealed the relationships between various malignant tumors and genomic information. In 2014, studies using whole-exome sequencing (WES) and whole-genome sequencing (WGS) for GC revealed the entire structure of GC genomics. Genomics with NGS has been used to identify new therapeutic targets for GC. Moreover, personalized medicine to provide specific therapy for targets based on multiplex gene panel testing of tumor tissues has become of clinical use. Recently, immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs) have been used for GC treatment; however, their response rates are limited. To predict the anti-tumor effects of ICIs for GC and to select patients suitable for ICI treatment, genomics also provides informative data not only of tumors but also of tumor microenvironments, such as tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes. In therapeutic strategies for unresectable or recurrent malignant tumors, the target is not only the primary lesion but also metastatic lesions, and metastatic lesions are often resistant to chemotherapy. Unlike colorectal carcinoma, there is a heterogeneous status of genetic variants between the primary and metastatic lesions in GC. Liquid biopsy analysis is also helpful for predicting the genomic status of both primary and metastatic lesions. Genomics has become an indispensable tool for GC treatment and is expected to be further developed in the future.

Keywords: Gastric cancer; Genomics; Liquid biopsy; Next-generation sequence; Precision medicine.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Genomics
  • High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local
  • Precision Medicine
  • Stomach Neoplasms* / drug therapy
  • Stomach Neoplasms* / genetics
  • Stomach Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Tumor Microenvironment