Biomarkers, Blood-Based Testing, and the Heterogeneous TumorS406
Sitting in an interesting session with a talk about 'liquid biopsies', analysing free DNA that the tumour has released into the blood.
As free circulating tumour DNA (ctDNA) is collected from the blood, it is easier to access than tumour biopsies and can be done over time. That way, one could e.g. monitor whether a tumour continues to respond to therapy or starts developing resistance.
A further advantage is that a ctDNA provides a 'summary' or integral of all tumour masses in a patient (assuming all tumours shed DNA at the same rate)- a biopsy is only telling for that specific area it is taken from.