Liquid biopsies and cancer omics

Ivano Amelio, Riccardo Bertolo, Pierluigi Bove, Oreste Claudio Buonomo, Eleonora Candi, Marcello Chiocchi, Chiara Cipriani, Nicola Di Daniele, Carlo Ganini, Hartmut Juhl, Alessandro Mauriello, Carla Marani, John Marshall, Manuela Montanaro, Giampiero Palmieri, Mauro Piacentini, Giuseppe Sica, Manfredi Tesauro, Valentina Rovella, Giuseppe TisoneYufang Shi, Ying Wang, Gerry Melino

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


The development of the sequencing technologies allowed the generation of huge amounts of molecular data from a single cancer specimen, allowing the clinical oncology to enter the era of the precision medicine. This massive amount of data is highlighting new details on cancer pathogenesis but still relies on tissue biopsies, which are unable to capture the dynamic nature of cancer through its evolution. This assumption led to the exploration of non-tissue sources of tumoral material opening the field of liquid biopsies. Blood, together with body fluids such as urines, or stool, from cancer patients, are analyzed applying the techniques used for the generation of omics data. With blood, this approach would allow to take into account tumor heterogeneity (since the circulating components such as CTCs, ctDNA, or ECVs derive from each cancer clone) in a time dependent manner, resulting in a somehow “real-time” understanding of cancer evolution. Liquid biopsies are beginning nowdays to be applied in many cancer contexts and are at the basis of many clinical trials in oncology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number131
JournalCell Death Discovery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Cell Biology
  • Cancer Research


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