Are Liquid Biopsies As Accurate as Tissue Biopsies in Diagnosing Cancers?


Prospective Longitudinal Studies in Patients with Solid Organ Tumors

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Mega Doctor NEWS

Edinburg, TX— The prevalence of various types of cancers in the community in Rio Grande Valley is proportionally higher than the national average. The existing techniques to diagnose cancers in solid organs invariably involves tissue biopsy with its attended consequences. It is therefore imperative to find a less invasive technique to accurately diagnose cancers, determine their prognosis, and to create models for predicting relapse in an individual patient. Given the fact that there are circulating tumor-specific cell-free DNA, exosome biomarkers and functional components in the peripheral blood of cancer patients, investigators have taken advantage of this observation and are creating new and innovative techniques to identify cancer-specific biomarkers in the blood – a process known as liquid biopsies. If successful, liquid biopsies will replace the more invasive techniques and would provide additional and much-needed tools for the physicians in managing the clinical care of their patients. “This technique can provide real-time information regarding patient staging and the molecular profile of the tumor to be used for mutation-targeted drug therapy. Of added benefit is the fact that liquid biopsies can be repeated with the desired frequency for close monitoring of progress and treatment”, said Sohail Rao, MD, MA, DPhil., President and Chief Executive Officer, DHR Health Institute for Research and Development.

DHR Health Institute for Research and Development is involved in numerous funded studies aimed at identifying a biomarker in the blood that would replace the more invasive techniques for the diagnosis of cancers.  Working with an external sponsor and in partnership with medical and surgical oncologists at DHR Health, the DHR Health Research Institute for Research and Development is involved in a prospective longitudinal study that will validate this concept in cancer patients.  This $1.80 million, five (5)-yearlong study is designed to employ liquid biopsies to identify biomarkers in the blood of patients suffering from colorectal, ovarian and prostate cancers. We anticipate adding other cancers to this abbreviated list in the very near future. If you need more information about this or any other clinical study currently offered by DHR Health Institute for Research & Development, please visit our website ( or send us an e-mail at

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