Theranostics 2020; 10(5):2374-2384. doi:10.7150/thno.40677 This issue


Refining Cancer Management Using Integrated Liquid Biopsy

Juhui Qiu1*, Jianxiong Xu1*, Kang Zhang1, Wei Gu1, Liming Nie2, Guixue Wang1✉, Yang Luo3,4✉

1. Key Laboratory for Biorheological Science and Technology of Ministry of Education, State and Local Joint Engineering Laboratory for Vascular Implants, Bioengineering College of Chongqing University, Chongqing, 400044, China.
2. State Key Laboratory of Molecular Vaccinology and Molecular Diagnostics & Center for Molecular Imaging and Translational Medicine, School of Public Health, Xiamen University, Xiamen 361102, China.
3. Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging Key Laboratory of Sichuan Province, Department of Nuclear Medicine, the Affiliated Hospital, Southwest Medical University, Luzhou, Sichuan, 646000, China.
4. Center for Laboratory Medicine, Medical College of Chongqing University, Chongqing, 400044, China.
* Contributed equally.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( See for full terms and conditions.
Qiu J, Xu J, Zhang K, Gu W, Nie L, Wang G, Luo Y. Refining Cancer Management Using Integrated Liquid Biopsy. Theranostics 2020; 10(5):2374-2384. doi:10.7150/thno.40677. Available from

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Graphic abstract

Liquid biopsy has emerged in the last ten years as an appealing noninvasive strategy to support early cancer diagnosis and follow-up interventions. However, conventional liquid biopsy strategies involving specified biomarkers have encountered unexpected inconsistencies stemming from the use of different analytical methodologies. Recent reports have repeatedly demonstrated that integrated detection of multiple liquid biopsy biomarkers can significantly improve diagnostic performance by eliminating the influence of intratumoral heterogeneity. Herein, we review the progress in the field of liquid biopsy and propose a novel integrated liquid biopsy framework consisting of three categories: elementary, intermediate, and advanced integration. We also summarize the merits of the integration strategy and propose a roadmap toward refining cancer diagnosis, metastasis surveillance, and prognostication.

Keywords: Combined detection, Cancer management, Circulating tumor DNA, Circulating tumor cell, Extracellular vesicle.