Types and Applications of Biomarkers

  • Biomarkers are measurable indicators used to assess biological processes or conditions.
  • Four main classes of biomarkers: molecular, physiologic, histologic, and radiographic.
  • Biomarkers can be predictive, prognostic, or diagnostic.
  • Predictive biomarkers help optimize treatments and predict clinical outcomes.
  • Diagnostic biomarkers narrow down diagnosis and indicate disease states.
  • Biomarkers play a crucial role in early disease detection, personalized medicine, monitoring disease progression, and assessing treatment response.
  • Biomarkers are important in drug development, clinical trials, and pharmacogenomics.

Predictive Biomarkers

  • Predictive biomarkers help predict clinical outcomes and indicate the likelihood of benefiting from a specific therapy.
  • Examples of predictive biomarkers include ER, PR, and HER2/neu in breast cancer, BCR-ABL fusion protein in chronic myeloid leukemia, c-KIT mutations in GIST tumors, EGFR1 mutations in NSCLC.
  • Predictive biomarkers improve patient survival rates and minimize unnecessary toxicity.

Diagnostic Biomarkers

  • Diagnostic biomarkers narrow down diagnosis and indicate organ function or disease states.
  • Examples of diagnostic biomarkers include rubidium chloride for evaluating heart muscle perfusion, presence of antibodies for indicating infections, and prostate-specific antigen (PSA) for prostate cancer.

Digital Biomarkers

  • Digital biomarkers are collected by smart biosensors and can include vital parameters and speech.
  • On-skin sweat analysis enables next-generation digital biomarkers.
  • Digital biomarkers can be easily shared with physicians and used with artificial intelligence for diagnostics.
  • Digital biomarkers have the potential to revolutionize healthcare by enabling remote monitoring and early detection of diseases.

Other Applications of Biomarkers

  • Biomarkers are used in nutrition research to estimate dietary intake and reflect intake of dietary constituents.
  • Biomarkers are used in precision medicine, health behavior change research, and intervention studies.
  • Biomarkers are used in cell biology, genetics, chemistry, geology, astrobiology, and ecotoxicology.
  • Active biomonitoring can provide insights into the effects of environmental changes and help assess the impact of pollutants on ecosystems.
  • Ethical issues and regulatory validation are important considerations in biomarker studies.

Biomarker Data Sources

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