Ther Adv Med Oncol. 2023 Sep 7;15:17588359231192401. doi: 10.1177/17588359231192401. eCollection 2023.
Over the past decade, the detection and analysis of liquid biopsy biomarkers such as circulating tumor cells (CTCs) and circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) have advanced significantly. They have received recognition for their clinical usefulness in detecting cancer at an early stage, monitoring disease, and evaluating treatment response. The emergence of liquid biopsy has been a helpful development, as it offers a minimally invasive, rapid, real-time monitoring, and possible alternative to traditional tissue biopsies. In resource-limited settings, the ideal platform for liquid biopsy should not only extract more CTCs or ctDNA from a minimal sample volume but also accurately represent the molecular heterogeneity of the patient’s disease. This review covers novel strategies and advancements in CTC and ctDNA-based liquid biopsy platforms, including microfluidic applications and comprehensive analysis of molecular complexity. We discuss these systems’ operational principles and performance efficiencies, as well as future opportunities and challenges for their implementation in clinical settings. In addition, we emphasize the importance of integrated platforms that incorporate machine learning and artificial intelligence in accurate liquid biopsy detection systems, which can greatly improve cancer management and enable precision diagnostics.