Dr. Levy on Potential Methods to Optimize Molecular Testing in Lung Cancer

Benjamin Philip Levy, MD, discusses potential methods to optimize molecular testing in lung cancer.

Benjamin Philip Levy, MD, associate professor of oncology, clinical director, Medical Oncology, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Sibley Memorial Hospital, Johns Hopkins Medicine, discusses potential methods to optimize molecular testing in lung cancer.

It is important to standardize and operationalize procedures so they can be used across health systems to efficiently utilize molecular testing, Levy explains. Often, this is dependent on key metrics and diagnostic pathways.

Awareness of molecular testing is also critical because educational gaps regarding the importance of testing and platform selection exist, Levy adds. Moreover, utilization of DNA-based and RNA-based testing platforms is optimal because RNA-based testing can capture fusions more efficiently than DNA-based platforms. As such, comprehensive genomic profiling with both methodologies is recommended. 

Finally, although tissue biopsy remains the gold standard in lung cancer, viable tissue samples can be difficult to obtain to perform next-generation sequencing. As such, liquid biopsies should be utilized as they offer increased turnaround time, accurate positive results, and high specificity, Levy explains. Therefore, all patients should be considered for concurrent tissue and liquid testing, Levy concludes.

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