Challenges and future of biomarker tests in the era of precision oncology: Can we rely on immunohistochemistry (IHC) or fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) to select the optimal patients for matched therapy?

Young Kwang Chae*, Ayush Arya, Lauren Chiec, Hiral Shah, Ari Rosenberg, Sandip Patel, Kirtee Raparia, Jaehyuk Choi, Derek A. Wainwright, Victoria Villaflor, Massimo Cristofanilli, Francis Giles

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

4 Scopus citations


Molecular techniques have improved our understanding of the pathogenesis of cancer development. These techniques have also fueled the rational development of targeted drugs for patient populations stratified by their genetic characteristics. These novel methods have changed the classic paradigm of diagnostic pathology; among them are IHC, FISH, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and microarray technology. IHC and FISH detection methods for human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (HER2), epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and programmed death ligand-1 (PD-L1) were recently approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as routine clinical practice for cancer patients. Here, we discuss general challenges related to the predictive power of these molecular biomarkers for targeted therapy in cancer medicine. We will also discuss the prospects of utilizing new biomarkers for fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR) and hepatocyte growth factor receptor (cMET/MET) targeted therapies for developing new and robust predictive biomarkers in oncology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)100863-100898
Number of pages36
Issue number59
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017



  • Biomarker
  • FISH
  • IHC
  • Predictive
  • Targeted therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology

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