Pathology in non-small cell lung cancer: evolving scenario

Pasquale Pisapia, Francesco Pepe, Antonino Iaccarino, Giancarlo Troncone, Umberto Malapelle


In 70–80% of advanced non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients the only available material for both morphological diagnosis and molecular biomarkers assessment for the better treatment choice is represented by small tissue samples (small biopsies or cytological specimens). In order to avoid inadequate results due to the low amount of nucleic acids input and the difficulty to obtain tissue re-biopsies, the so called “liquid biopsy” could play a relevant role in this setting of patients. Tumoral DNA can be extracted from different body fluids [urine, saliva/sputum, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), pleural effusion (PE)] of the patient or from supernatant sample of cytological preparations. In this review we analyzed the different the different “liquid biopsies” approaches.