Paul Kelly Marcom, MD, discusses the use of liquid biopsies in breast cancer treatment.
Paul Kelly Marcom, MD, a professor of medicine at Duke University School of Medicine and member of Duke Cancer Institute, discusses the use of liquid biopsies in breast cancer treatment.
Marcom does not feel as comfortable using liquid biopsies as he does tissue biopsies, even with assay metrics such as allele frequency. Despite Marcom’s discomfort with liquid biopsies, the SOLAR-1 trial highlighted a signal via cell-free DNA.
The degree of understanding and trust in liquid biopsy technology, according to Marcom, is 5 years behind next-generation sequencing from solid tumors. Currently, physicians can get a positive predictor out of finding a mutation using a liquid biopsy — if it is found. Physicians must be careful about excluding mutations, but the community is starting to gain confidence in the utility of these assays, Marcom concludes.