Dysplastic aberrant crypt foci: Biomarkers of early colorectal neoplasia and response to preventive intervention

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27 Scopus citations

Abstract

The discovery of aberrant crypt foci (ACF) more than three decades ago not only enhanced our understanding of how colorectal tumors form, but provided new opportunities to detect lesions prior to adenoma development and intervene in the colorectal carcinogenesis process even earlier. Because not all ACF progress to neoplasia, it is important to stratify these lesions based on the presence of dysplasia and establish early detection methods and interventions that specifically target dysplastic ACF (microadenomas). Significant progress has been made in characterizing the morphology and genetics of dysplastic ACF in both preclinical models and humans. Image-based methods have been established and new techniques that utilize bioactivatable probes and capture histologic abnormalities in vivo are emerging for lesion detection. Successful identification of agents that target dysplastic ACF holds great promise for intervening even earlier in the carcinogenesis process to maximize tumor inhibition. Future preclinical and clinical prevention studies should give significant attention to assessing the utility of dysplastic ACF as the earliest identifiable biomarker of colorectal neoplasia and response to therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)229-239
Number of pages11
JournalCancer Prevention Research
Volume13
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020

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