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BioMed Research International
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 340732, 10 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/340732
Review Article

The Emergent Landscape of Detecting EGFR Mutations Using Circulating Tumor DNA in Lung Cancer

1Department of Internal Medicine, National Cheng Kung University Hospital, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, No. 138, Shengli Road, North District, Tainan City 704, Taiwan
2Institute of Oral Medicine, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, No. 1, University Road, East District, Tainan City 704, Taiwan
3UCLA School of Dentistry, 10833 Le Conte, CHS-Box 951668, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1668, USA
4Institute of Clinical Medicine, National Cheng Kung University Hospital, College of Medicine, National Cheng Kung University, No. 35, Xiaodong Road, North District, Tainan City 704, Taiwan

Received 29 January 2015; Accepted 18 March 2015

Academic Editor: Aurelio Ariza

Copyright © 2015 Wei-Lun Huang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

The advances in targeted therapies for lung cancer are based on the evaluation of specific gene mutations especially the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). The assays largely depend on the acquisition of tumor tissue via biopsy before the initiation of therapy or after the onset of acquired resistance. However, the limitations of tissue biopsy including tumor heterogeneity and insufficient tissues for molecular testing are impotent clinical obstacles for mutation analysis and lung cancer treatment. Due to the invasive procedure of tissue biopsy and the progressive development of drug-resistant EGFR mutations, the effective initial detection and continuous monitoring of EGFR mutations are still unmet requirements. Circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) detection is a promising biomarker for noninvasive assessment of cancer burden. Recent advancement of sensitive techniques in detecting EGFR mutations using ctDNA enables a broad range of clinical applications, including early detection of disease, prediction of treatment responses, and disease progression. This review not only introduces the biology and clinical implementations of ctDNA but also includes the updating information of recent advancement of techniques for detecting EGFR mutation using ctDNA in lung cancer.