126 pages

Date published 
July 2008

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Cancer Biomarkers Report Overview


coverCancer Biomarkers: Adoption Is Driving Growth

Author: John Bates, PhD




Aggressive adoption of cancer biomarkers will accelerate the growth of commercial markets for these products. This new report offers in-depth analysis of:

  • The current cancer biomarker products, applications, and markets
  • Key validation and assessment cancer biomarker programs integrating established “standards of care” for cancer diagnosis and treatment
  • Product opportunities for improved screening and early detection, to provide better guidance on therapy, for understanding cancer staging, response to treatment, and prognosis
  • Profile of business models behind cancer biomarker products and a SWOT analysis associated with specific strategies
  • Projections for market growth for cancer biomarker product categories

Cancer biomarkers are employed across the entire healthcare spectrum from the cancer biological research laboratory to patient monitoring in the clinic. Cancer biomarkers have contributed greatly to our current understanding of the heterogeneous nature of specific cancers and have led to improvements in treatment outcomes. Biomarker diagnostic and drug therapy combinations are the basis of established treatment protocols in the clinic. 


Cancer biomarker−based diagnostics have applications for establishing disease predisposition, early detection, cancer staging, therapy selection, identifying whether or not a cancer is metastatic, therapy monitoring, assessing prognosis, and advances in the adjuvant setting. As this report details, full adoption of cancer biomarkers in the clinic has to date been slow, and only a limited number of cancer biomarker products are currently in routine use. However, several major programs have been organized to facilitate the validation and assessment of cancer biomarkers alongside the established “standards of care” for cancer diagnosis and treatment. These programs are likely to be key to increasing the rate of cancer biomarker adoption in the clinic setting. Further, the regulatory environment is progressing as more cancer biomarker products gain approval. 

Cancer Biomarkers: Adoption Is Driving Growth explores the various applications for cancer biomarkers across the healthcare spectrum by presenting the successful adoption of specific biomarkers. These applications include the identification of novel therapeutic targets in cancer drug discovery and uses of cancer biomarkers as surrogate markers for drug efficacy in clinical trials. This report describes a number of factors providing the driving forces behind cancer biomarker growth and commercialization. These factors include requirements to improve screening and early detection, to provide better guidance on therapy and the need to avoid therapy resistance attributes, for understanding cancer staging, response to treatment, and prognosis.

Cancer Biomarkers: Adoption Is Driving Growth reviews emerging cancer biomarker types and the increasing interest in circulating tumor cells, as well as data on potential DNA, RNA, and protein biomarkers under study, including:

  • Oncogenes 
  • Germline inheritance 
  • Mutations in drug targets 
  • Epigenetic changes

The report presents the business models behind cancer biomarker products and a SWOT profile analysis associated with specific strategies. Also, the intellectual property issues around cancer biomarkers are presented, since clear ownership may be a problem in certain circumstances. Further, projections for growth areas within the cancer biomarker markets are provided.

Cancer Biomarkers: Adoption Is Driving Growth includes summaries of interviews with four experts from companies engaged in cancer biomarker product commercialization. Additionally, it provides an analysis of results from a recent Insight Pharma Reports survey, primarily aimed at the pharmaceutical industry, relating to the research, development, and commercialization of cancer biomarkers.

About the Author:
John Bates, PhD
, is an experienced director and life science consultant. After receiving his PhD in cancer research, Dr. Bates joined Upjohn Ltd, managing a team of biopharmaceutical scientists, later taking a similar role with Glaxo. In 1989, he cofounded Melbourn Scientific Ltd, and Pharmaceutical Technology Ltd in 1994, where he invented and developed VectaSEP CLE, sold under exclusive license to Whatman plc in 1997. In 2000, Dr. Bates joined ANGLE Technology Ltd, providing management and due diligence on new life science company formation in the UK and US, later joining Acumen Bioscience Ltd (drug discovery instrumentation) as Technical Director. He formed VennBio in 2002 and has provided Board level management and consultancy to life science companies.