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Open Access Highly Accessed Review

Personalized therapies in the cancer "omics" era

Alberto Ocaña12 and Atanasio Pandiella3*

Author Affiliations

1 Servicio de Oncología Médica, Complejo Hospitalario Universitario de Albacete y unidad AECC, Albacete, Spain

2 Drug Development Program, Princess Margaret Hospital, Toronto, Canada

3 Instituto de Biología Molecular y Celular del Cáncer, CSIC-Universidad de Salamanca, Salamanca, Spain

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Molecular Cancer 2010, 9:202  doi:10.1186/1476-4598-9-202

Published: 29 July 2010

Abstract

A molecular hallmark of cancer is the presence of genetic alterations in the tumoral DNA. Understanding how these alterations translate into the malignant phenotype is critical for the adequate treatment of oncologic diseases. Several cancer genome sequencing reports have uncovered the number and identity of proteins and pathways frequently altered in cancer. In this article we discuss how integration of these genomic data with other biological and proteomic studies may help in designing anticancer therapies "a la carte". An important conclusion is that next generation treatment of neoplasias must be based on rational drug combinations that target various pathways and cellular entities that sustain the survival of cancer cells.