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Jan 2006 Omics : a journal of integrative biology

Gene expression profiling and clinical outcome in breast cancer.


Pathologic and clinical heterogeneity of breast cancer reflects the poorly documented, complex, and combinatory molecular basis of the disease and is in part responsible for therapeutic failures. The DNA microarray technique allows the analysis of RNA expression of several thousands of genes simultaneously in a sample. There are multiple potential applications of the technique in cancer research. A number of recent studies have shown the promising role of gene expression profiling in breast cancer by identifying new prognostic subclasses unidentifiable by conventional parameters and new prognostic and/or predictive gene signatures, whose predictive impact is superior to conventional histoclinical prognostic factors. In this review we describe current use of DNA microarrays in the prognosis of breast cancer. We also discuss issues that need to be addressed in the near future to allow the method to reach its full potential.

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