Oncology Nurses’ Role in Translating Biomarker Testing Results

September 15, 2022

By Caressa Valdueza, MSN, AGNP-BC, AOCNP®

As oncology biomarker testing becomes a routine part of clinical practice, so does first-line use of their associated targeted therapies (https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fimmu.2020.01280/full) such as monoclonal antibodies, checkpoint inhibitors, and tyrosine kinase inhibitors

The practice changes affect nurses at all levels, and some of the roles oncology nurses may now find themselves in include:

Biomarker Decision Support Tool

ONS’s new Biomarker Database (http://biomarkers.ons.org/), a clinical decision support tool, is a new resource to help oncology nurses understand patients’ treatment eligibility, risk, and prognosis and guide patient education. The database includes both germline and somatic biomarkers, their purpose in clinical practice (e.g., predictive, susceptibility, prognostic), and their associated cancer types, targeted therapies, testing modality, implications for patient care, and additional considerations.

How to Use the Database in Clinical Practice

Clinicians can apply the tool throughout their daily cancer care and patient interactions, including:

Oncology nurses’ roles in biomarker translation are more vital than ever. New actionable biomarkers are quickly emerging and reshaping treatment guidelines. As cancer treatment evolves, oncology nurses must remain current in applying biomarkers to clinical practice.


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