Table of Contents
ISRN Gastroenterology
Volume 2014, Article ID 464015, 10 pages
Review Article

Epigenetic Biomarkers: Potential Applications in Gastrointestinal Cancers

Department of Medical Oncology, Sir Runrun Shaw Hospital, Medical School of Zhejiang University, Hangzhou 310016, China

Received 31 December 2013; Accepted 25 January 2014; Published 6 March 2014

Academic Editors: T. Tsukamoto and J. Yu

Copyright © 2014 Jiaqiu Li 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.


Genetics and epigenetics coregulate the cancer initiation and progression. Epigenetic mechanisms include DNA methylation, histone modification, chromatin remodeling, and noncoding RNAs. Aberrant epigenetic modifications play a fundamental role in the formation of gastrointestinal cancers. Advances in epigenetics offer a better understanding of the carcinogenesis and provide new insights into the discovery of biomarkers for diagnosis, and prognosis prediction of human cancers. This review aims to overview the epigenetic aberrance and the clinical applications as biomarkers in gastrointestinal cancers mainly gastric cancer and colorectal cancer.