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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Tumor Markers. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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The Ideal Tumor Marker Would Be Indicative of Tumor Mass

Ideally, tumor marker concentration would correlate to the mass of the tumor, where an increased measured level would correspond directly to the tumor's size or the extent of its metastasis. Along these lines, a decrease in tumor marker concentration would be able to predict tumor shrinkage.
Such predictable correlations between tumor mass and expressed tumor marker concentration may be linear or exponential, as illustrated in these charts.