Circulating Tumor Cells in Gastrointestinal Cancer: Current Practices and Future Directions

Colin M. Court, Jacob S. Ankeny, Shonan Sho, James S. Tomlinson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


GI cancers are the leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide primarily due to a combination of late presentation and aggressive biology. The lack of adequate biomarkers for screening, diagnosis, staging, and prognosis confounds clinical decision-making and delays potentially effective therapies. Circulating tumor cells (CTCs) are a new biomarker with particular promise in GI cancers, potentially offering clinicians and researchers real-time access to tumor tissue in a reliable, safe, and cost-effective manner. Preliminary studies have investigated the potential clinical utility of CTCs for all GI cancer types with promising results. Furthermore, advances in single cell analytics have been successfully applied to CTCs, allowing for exciting new clinical and research applications. In this chapter, we will review the current state of CTC research in GI cancers as well as the potential future applications that are currently being developed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)345-376
Number of pages32
JournalCancer treatment and research
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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