Pancreatic cancer circulating tumor cells: applications for personalized oncology.

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Pancreatic cancer circulating tumor cells: applications for personalized oncology.

Expert Rev Mol Diagn. 2018 Aug 11;:

Authors: DiPardo BJ, Winograd P, Court CM, Tomlinson JS

INTRODUCTION: Pancreatic cancer (PC) is a highly lethal disease, in part because of early metastasis, late diagnosis, and limited treatment options. Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are cancer cells that have achieved the metastatic step of intravasation, and are thus a unique source of biomarkers with potential applications in the staging, prognostication, and treatment of PC. Areas covered: This review describes the use of CTCs in PC, including isolation methods, the significance of CTC enumeration, and studies examining phenotypic and molecular characteristics of CTCs. We also speculate on future directions for PC CTC research such as single-cell analysis and CTC culture. Expert commentary: CTCs represent a potential unique serial source of cancer tissue via a convenient and minimally invasive blood draw. Recent development of isolation methods that allow for the release of viable CTCs with unaltered molecular characteristics has set the stage for single cell analysis and ex vivo culture. Although there is significant potential for CTCs as a biomarker to impact PC from diagnosis to therapy, there still remain a number of challenges to the routine implementation of CTCs in the clinical management of PC.

PMID: 30099926 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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