NSCLC: Use of biomarkers in prognosis, treatment
37 Canadian oncologists got together in a consensus panel to talk about biomarkers and histologic subtypes of non-small cell lung cancer.
All NSCLC should be tested for the EGFR mutation, as tyrosine kinase inhibitors can prolong survival for eligible patients.
There is insufficient evidence to recommend routine testing for other mutations (KRAS, p53, VEGF, EML4/ALK, etc).
Squamous cell may have a worse prognosis than adenocarcinoma.
Whenever possible, get biopsy tissue from a solid tumor, rather than just cytology, to enhance yield of subtyping.
Ellis P et al. A Systematic Review and Canadian Consensus Recommendations on the Use of Biomarkers in the Treatment of Non-small Cell Lung Cancer. J Thorac Oncol 2011;6:1379-1391.