Background and aim. Lung cancer remains one of the most threatening malignancies, ranking as the second most diagnosed cancer, and it continues to be the leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. Challenges persist with late diagnosis and the high mutational burden characteristic of lung cancer.

Methods. Our study focuses on identifying the mutational spectrum of a cohort of advanced-stage non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients using a minimally invasive method through blood collection. To analyze the mutational landscape of these patients, we employed plasma DNA for the next-generation sequencing (NGS) cancer panel Ion Torrent, which contains 50 of the most mutated genes in lung cancer. All protocols for extraction, quality and quantity control, and library preparation follow the manufacturer’s rules. Bioinformatics analysis was performed to select pathogenic mutations versus non-pathogenic-benign ones.

Results. This approach is particularly valuable for patients in advanced stages (III and IV, n=10) of lung adenocarcinoma and lung squamous cell carcinoma, who lack surgical options and limited therapeutic avenues. The comprehensive sequencing analysis revealed that nine of the ten lung cancer patients carried a TP53 mutation. Also, several other mutations exist in various cases, showing heterogeneous profiling.

Conclusions. Our findings demonstrate the potential of liquid biopsies in providing crucial genetic insights that can guide personalized treatment strategies, improving the management and outcomes for patients with advanced lung cancer.


Next-generation sequencing, NSCLC, biomarkers