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Int J Mol Epidemiol Genet 2012;3(2):107-114

Original Article
Transcriptional output in a prospective design conditionally on follow-up and
exposure: the multistage model of cancer

Anabela G Berenguer, Rita A Câmara, António D Brehm, Susana Oliveira, Ana T Fernandes

Eiliv Lund, Sandra Plancade

Institute of Community Medicine, University of Tromsø, 9037 Tromsø, Norway

Received November 25, 2011; accepted April 21, 2012; Epub May 10, 2012; Published May 30, 2012

Abstract: Transcriptomics as the analysis of mRNA and microRNA could be implemented in prospective studies both in
peripheral blood and tissues. Its application in cancer epidemiology could provide a new understanding of the functional
changes underlying the multistage model of carcinogenesis, as well as the relationship between these changes and exposure
to carcinogens. Transcriptomics is not merely another –omics technology for risk assessment in traditional prospective
studies. Instead, this novel approach has the potential to estimate the distribution of gene expression conditionally on different
exposures, and to study the length of the different stages of carcinogenesis. If it proves to be a valid approach, transcriptomics
could be an opportunity to make meaningful advances in our understanding of the carcinogenic process. (IJMEG1111008).

Key words: Carcinogenesis, systems epidemiology, transcriptomics, prospective study, latent variable, multistage model

Address all correspondence to:
Dr. Eiliv Lund
Institute of Community Medicine
University of Tromsø, 9037 Tromsø, Norway.
Tel: +47 91144064; Fax: +47 77644831
E-mail: eiliv.lund@uit.no