Cancer and Liquid Biopsy and its Medical Uses

Opinion Article - Journal of Interdisciplinary Histopathology (2022)

Cancer and Liquid Biopsy and its Medical Uses

Lido Kunn*
Department of Histology, University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain
*Corresponding Author:

Lido Kunn, Department of Histology, University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain, Email:

Received: 01-Jul-2022, Manuscript No. EJMJIH-22-68971; Editor assigned: 04-Jul-2022, Pre QC No. EJMJIH-22-68971 (PQ); Reviewed: 18-Jul-2022, QC No. EJMJIH-22-68971; Revised: 25-Jul-2022, Manuscript No. EJMJIH-22-68971 (R); Published: 02-Aug-2022


A biopsy can help determine if you have cancer or another condition. A biopsy is a procedure to remove a piece of tissue or a sample of cells from your body so that it can be tested in a laboratory.


Several biopsy methods can be used when cancer is suspected. In an excisional biopsy, the entire lesion is attempted to be removed. The surgical margin of the specimen is inspected to check if the disease has spread past the area that was biopsied, in addition to the quantity of unaffected tissue surrounding the lesion, when the specimen is reviewed. “Clear margins” or “negative margins” refer to the edges of the biopsy material being free of disease. “Positive margins” denote the presence of disease and, depending on the diagnosis, the potential necessity for a broader excision. An incisional biopsy can take a wedge of tissue when intact removal is not advised for a number of reasons. Devices that “bite” a sample can sometimes be used to capture a sample. Tissue can be gathered in the lumen of needles of various diameters (core biopsy). Fine needle aspiration biopsy is the collection of cells and cell clusters using smaller diameter needles.

A biopsy’s pathologic analysis can assist distinguish between various cancer types and can reveal whether a lesion is benign or malignant. A bigger excisional specimen known as a resection, as opposed to a biopsy that only samples a lesion, may be provided to a pathologist by a surgeon who is trying to remove a patient’s known lesion. For instance, even if a prior nonexcisional breast biopsy had previously confirmed the diagnosis of breast cancer, a pathologist would still evaluate a mastectomy specimen. The whole mastectomy specimen would be examined to determine the degree of the cancer’s spread and to identify the precise form of the malignancy (tumour sub classification and histologic “grading”).

Liquid biopsy

Circulating tumour cell assays and cell-free circulating tumour DNA tests are the two different kinds of liquid biopsies. These techniques offer a minimally invasive substitute for repeated invasive biopsies for monitoring cancer treatment, testing available medications against circulating tumour cells, assessing cancer mutations, and formulating tailored treatment plans. Additionally, liquid biopsies have certain advantages over tissue biopsy-based genomic testing because cancer is a heterogeneous genetic illness and excisional biopsies only give a snapshot in time of some of the quick, dynamic genetic alterations occurring in tumours. Excisional biopsies are also invasive, cannot be utilized frequently, and are useless for figuring out how tumours develop and metastasize.

Liquid biopsy can offer real-time information on the stage of tumour progression, therapy success, and risk of cancer spread by identifying, measuring, and characterizing important Circulating Tumour Cells (CTCs). Instead of using a standard biopsy, this technological advancement may make it possible to identify and treat cancer using repeated blood tests. Circulating tumour cell assays are now being developed by numerous pharmaceutical companies and are already available at Maintrac; however they are not yet reimbursed by insurance. These exams examine tumour cells in the blood (CTCs). The initial biopsy and the changes seen in the metastatic areas were both mirrored in the CTCs, according to analysis of individual CTCs, which revealed a significant level of heterogeneity detected at the single cell level for both protein expression and protein localization.

Since there is roughly 100 times as much cell-free DNA as there is in circulating tumour cells, analysis of cell-free circulating tumour DNA (cfDNA) provides an advantage over experiments using those cells. These exams examine DNA slivers from tumour cells that are continually released into the bloodstream. Personal Genome Diagnostics and Guardant Health are two businesses that provide cfDNA next-generation sequencing testing. According to a recent publication of results on more than 15,000 advanced cancer patients sequenced with the Guardant Health test, these tests are becoming more and more commonplace when a tissue biopsy lacks enough material for DNA testing or when performing an intrusive biopsy technique is unsafe.

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