Recent advances in surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy based liquid biopsy for colorectal cancer (Review)

Colorectal Cancer

Exp Ther Med. 2020 Dec;20(6):213. doi: 10.3892/etm.2020.9342. Epub 2020 Oct 14.


As colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the forms of cancer with the highest prevalence globally and with a high mortality, screening and early detection remains a major issue. Colonoscopy is still the gold standard for detecting premalignant lesions, but it is burdened by some complications. For instance, it is laborious, with some difficulties of acceptance for some patients, and is ultimately an imperfect standard, given that some premalignant lesions or incipient malignancies can be missed by

colonoscopic evaluation. In this context, new non-invasive approaches such as surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) based liquid biopsy have gained ground in recent years, showing promising results in oncological pathology diagnosis. These new methods have enabled the detection of subtle molecular profile alterations prior to any macroscopic morphological changes, thus providing a useful tool for early CRC detection. In the present review, we provide a summary of published studies applying SERS in CRC detection, along with our personal experience in using SERS in the diagnosis of different oncological pathologies, including CRC.