The role of cell free DNA and liquid biopsies in haematological conditions

Nicholas Bingham, Andrew Spencer
2020 Cancer Drug Resistance  
Cell free nucleic acids (CFNAs) are nucleic acids released from cells that circulate within bodily fluids. Recent advances in molecular techniques have led to the ability to interrogate CFNAs in a clinically meaningful way, for example the identification and assessment of foetal CFNAs in maternal blood, allowing minimally invasive testing for foetal genetic abnormalities. The majority of CFNAs arise from haemopoietic cells, making it a particularly rich source of genetic information in
more » ... rmation in haematological conditions. Furthermore, the innate genetic heterogeneity of haematological malignancies, as epitomised by multiple myeloma, lend itself well to "liquid biopsies". This approach promises to provide a more wholistic assessment of whole disease genetics, especially when contrasted against the current gold-standard of single site tissue biopsies. This review briefly summarises the definitions and physiology of CFNAs, both cell free DNA (cfDNA) and extracellular RNA (exRNA), before exploring the literature surrounding the current and future roles of cfDNA in the haematological malignancies and patient care.
doi:10.20517/cdr.2019.93 fatcat:ewaz257hgff2bkiye3udo5a5s4