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Table 3 Differences in CTC, cfDNA and ctDNA utilization in MRD

From: Advances in the assessment of minimal residual disease in mantle cell lymphoma

  CTCs cfDNA ctDNA
Strengths -Minimally invasive
-Easily repeated
-FDA-approved method available
-Cancer therapy management
-Appropriate for solid tumor cancer subtypes
-Minimally invasive
-Easily repeated
-Easily obtainable
-Detect drug mutations
-Aid in drug selection and therapy response prediction
-Monitoring for emerging drug resistance
-Minimally invasive
-Easily repeated
-Drug resistance detection at gene level
-Driver mutation detection at gene level
-Appropriate for liquid tumor cancer subtypes
Weaknesses -Dilution by benign epithelial cells
-Large size not suitable for filtration
-Reflects circulating disease only
-Diluted with DNA from healthy cells
-Present in inflammatory states and aging
-Predetermined somatic alterations needed
-Single-cell analysis not permitted
-Standardized nor validated method not available yet
-Dilution by cfDNA from non-malignant cells
-Low amounts available