Biopsy is a medical procedure in which tissue samples from the body are removed surgically for detection and diagnosis of a specific disease. In cancer, samples of tumors or blood are taken from cancer patients, and analysed using different methods to detect, diagnose the type of cancer and the stage of cancer. Appropriate treatment strategies are used to treat a patient based on the biopsy reports. Core biopsy and bone marrow biopsy are typical examples of biopsies performed in cancer treatment.

In the past two decades scientists have shown that cancer tumors shed cells into blood which are known as Circulating Tumor Cells (CTC). They also shed DNA into blood which is called circulating Tumor DNA (cTDNA). Apart from this tumor cells also shed proteins encapsulated in lipid vesicles (Exosomes).

The number of CTC in blood has been shown to be associated with the severity of cancer, responses to treatment, development of resistance to treatment, and for prognosis. Analysis of ctDNA in blood has shown the presence of driver mutations, resistance mutations, and can be representative of tumor heterogeneity.

The procedure in which blood samples are taken from a cancer patient for detection, diagnosis and treatment of cancer is called Liquid Biopsy. The main advantage of this procedure is that is non-invasive.

Liquid biopsies are now being increasingly used to complement conventional clinical procedures in detection, diagnosis, stratification of patients and treatment monitoring in cancer.

OncoDynamix analyses data from liquid biopsies using its unique platform technology to identify treatments for specific cancer patients with specific cancers.

Author:Ramesh Jayaraman-Chief Scientific Officer, OncoDynamiX Lifesciences.


  • American Association of Cancer Research, Cancer Progress Report, 2021