Recent technological advances in the field of molecular diagnostics (including blood-based tumor genotyping) allow the measurement of clonal evolution in patients with cancer, thus adding a new dimension to precision medicine: time. The translation of this new knowledge into clinical benefit implies rethinking therapeutic strategies. In essence, it means considering as a target not only individual oncogenes but also the evolving nature of human tumors. Here, we analyze the limitations of targeted therapies and propose approaches for treatment within an evolutionary framework. Significance: Precision cancer medicine relies on the possibility to match, in daily medical practice, detailed genomic profiles of a patient’s disease with a portfolio of drugs targeted against tumor-specific alterations. Clinical blockade of oncogenes is effective but only transiently; an approach to monitor clonal evolution in patients and develop therapies that also evolve over time may result in improved therapeutic control and survival outcomes.
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