Pathologists at the Leading Edge of Optimizing the Tumor Tissue Journey for Diagnostic Accuracy and Molecular Testing

Luis E. De Las Casas, David G. Hicks

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Objectives: Tumor biomarker analyses accompanying immuno-oncology therapies are coupled with a tumor tissue journey aiming to guide tissue procurement and allow for accurate diagnosis and delivery of test results. The engagement of pathologists in the tumor tissue journey is essential because they are able to link the preanalytic requirements of this process with pathologic evaluation and clinical information, ultimately influencing treatment decisions for patients with cancer. The aim of this review is to provide suggestions on how cancer diagnosis and the delivery of molecular test results may be optimized, based on the needs and available resources of institutions, by placing the tumor tissue journey under the leadership of pathologists. Methods: Literature searches on PubMed and personal experience provided the necessary material to satisfy the objectives of this review. Results: Pathologists are usually involved across many steps of the tumor tissue journey and have the requisite knowledge to ensure its efficiency. Conclusions: The expansion of oncology diagnostic testing emphasizes the need for pathologists to acquire a leadership role in the multidisciplinary effort to optimize the accuracy, completeness, and delivery of diagnoses guiding personalized treatments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)781-792
Number of pages12
JournalAmerican journal of clinical pathology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Diagnosis
  • Molecular testing
  • Pathologist
  • Sampling
  • Tumor tissue journey

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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