Promoter CpG island methylation markers in colorectal cancer: the road ahead

Muriel X. G. Draht, Robert G. Riedl, Hanneke Niessen, Beatriz Carvalho, Gerrit A. Meijer, James G. Herman, Manon van Engeland, Veerle Melotte*, Kim M. Smits

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Despite increasing knowledge on the biology, detection and treatment of colorectal cancer (CRC), the disease is still a major health problem. Hypermethylation of promoter regions of genes has been studied extensively as a contributor in CRC carcinogenesis. In addition, it is the topic of many studies focusing on biomarkers for the early detection, prediction of prognosis and treatment outcome. Methylation markers may be preferred over current screening and test methods as they are stable and easy to detect. However, almost no methylation marker is currently being used in clinical practice, often due to a lack of sensitivity, specificity, or validation of the results. This review summarizes the current knowledge of hypermethylation biomarkers for CRC detection, progression and treatment outcome.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-194
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2012


  • colorectal cancer
  • DNA methylation
  • early detection marker
  • prediction marker
  • prognostic marker


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