A review on biomarkers for prediction of treatment outcome in gastric cancer

Filippo Pietrantonio, Filippo De Braud, Valentina Da Prat, Federica Perrone, Marco Alessandro Pierotti, Manuela Gariboldi, Giuseppe Fanetti, Pamela Biondani, Alessandro Pellegrinelli, Ilaria Bossi, Maria Di Bartolomeo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Currently, therapeutic management of gastric cancer is mainly based on clinical data and histological features. Although several new treatment options have recently been introduced, inter-individual variability of response and drug resistance are still a challenge. Many promising markers have been identified to predict prognosis and likelihood of response to therapy, in order to tailor treatment regimens on the basis of patients' individual features. However, despite recent developments in gene sequencing and molecular diagnostics, many biomarkers still have a controversial role. Published data are often contradictory and at the moment, no molecular marker, other than Human epidermal growth factor receptor-2 (HER2) status for trastuzumab-based treatment, has entered the mainstream of clinical practice. The primary obstacle to the identification of reliable markers lies in technical difficulties in quantitatively assessing molecular alterations; genome-wide analyses are also often misleading due to the complexity of biological processes. Nevertheless, many biomarkers are being evaluated in clinical trials in order to identify criteria for stratifying patients and establish customized therapeutic approaches. In this review, we provide an update on promising biological prognostic and predictive markers, with a focus on growth factor signalling molecules, DNA repair systems, fluoropyrimidine metabolism and apoptotic pathways.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1257-1266
Number of pages10
JournalAnticancer Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2013


  • Apoptotic pathway
  • Biomarkers
  • Chemotherapy
  • DNA repair systems
  • Fluoropyrimidine metabolism
  • Gastric cancer
  • HER2
  • Review
  • Targeted therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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