Clinical Models of Chemoprevention for Colon Cancer

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Colon cancer is a common malignancy in the westernized world and is incurable in its advanced stages. This article summarizes the currently available information on colorectal cancer chemoprevention. A brief outline of the incidence and etiologic factors is followed by a discussion of the evidence on which chemopreventive strategies for colon cancer are modeled. This includes a description of the development of surrogate endpoint biomarkers and experimental models to study colorectal cancer chemopreventives, a review of the promising colorectal cancer chemopreventives, and a discussion of the issues to be addressed in the design of future chemoprevention trials. The article concludes with an emphasis on the development and validation of biomarkers and selection of high-risk cohorts using genetic and epidemiologic tools as the main goals of future colon cancer chemoprevention trials before large-scale, risk-reduction trials are conducted.