VOL. 3, No. 3/4, October 2006

E. Espinosa, et al. [2006] Med Hypotheses Res 3: 761-768.

High-throughput Techniques in Breast Cancer: Has
Their Time Come?

Enrique Espinosa*, Pilar Zamora, Juan Ángel Fresno and Manuel
González Barón

Service of Medical Oncology and Chair of Oncology and Pulliative Care, Hospital La Paz,
Universidad Autónoma, Madrid

Abstract. In breast cancer patients, high-throughput technologies such as DNA-
microarrays or RT-PCR can improve the prognostic and predictive information that we now
get from classical parameters. Classical factors do not accurately inform about which
patients need adjuvant therapy or which tumours will resist the effect of that therapy. Studies
performed in breast cancer with high-throughput techniques have focused on tumour
biology, prognosis and prediction of response, but further refinement is needed before these
techniques become part of the clinical routine. In the meantime, they will be used in clinical
investigation, particularly in the adjuvant setting, where modest improvements in the
capacity of prediction can benefit many women. Close cooperation among clinicians,
pathologists and basic investigators is essential to take high-through techniques to daily
practice. New diagnostic tools will be complex but they will provide valuable information for
our patients.

*Address all correspondence to: Dr. E. Espinosa, Service of Medical Oncology,
Hospital La Paz, Pº de la Castellana, 261 – 28046, Madrid, Spain. E-Mail:

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