Cancer diagnostics: current concepts and future perspectives
The World Health Organization (WHO) (1) has recently released reliable data about the global epidemiology of cancer. Overall, cancer is one of the most common diseases, with as many as 14 million new cases each year and accounting for over 8.8 million deaths around the globe. These notable figures are further aggravated by future projection of incidence and prevalence, wherein the total number of new cancer cases is predicted to increase by over 70% over the next 2 decades, paralleled by a similarly increasing number of deaths (Figure 1). Notably, the total expenditure for cancer totaled approximates 125 billion US$ in 2010 in the United States, and is projected to increase to over 150 billion US$ in 2020. Lung cancer is the most frequent cause of death for cancer worldwide (1.69 million deaths), followed by hepatic malignancies (788,000 deaths), colorectal (774,000 deaths), gastric (754,000 deaths) and breast (571,000 deaths) cancers (2).