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Immunohistochemistry of Lung Cancer Biomarkers.

Immunohistochemical (IHC) staining represents a comparatively inexpensive testing method that is attractive as a potential alternative to molecular sequencing methods or fluorescence in situ hybridization for pulmonary biomarker testing. While a variety of IHC tests directed at actionable genetic alterations have been developed and evaluated since the advent of targeted therapy, specific antibody clones for anaplastic lymphoma kinase, ROS-1, and potentially neurotrophic tropmyosin receptor kinase have been the primary antibodies that provide sufficiently robust results to be utilized as either a primary testing or screening method to direct targeted therapy. Antibodies for a variety of other targets such as epidermal growth factor receptors, for example, have lacked sufficient sensitivity and specificity to cover the range of mutations that may occur and are generally not recommended in lieu of molecular testing with the exception of limited resource settings. IHC is also used as a predictive marker for response to immunotherapy through evaluation of programmed death ligand 1 expression. In addition, multiple antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) are under investigation, designed to deliver drugs directly to tumor cells through binding to specific target antigens. Some ADCs have already received accelerated FDA approval, and IHC was incorporated in many clinical trials evaluating ADC efficacy. As such, it is anticipated that ADCs may have a companion diagnostic IHC to guide patient selection.

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