PURPOSE OF REVIEW:
The influence of the long life-history of prostate cancer on the temporal and spatial variability of the tumour genome is now being elucidated. Multiregion sequencing to identify spatio-genomic differences in prostate tumour mutation profiles combined with computational approaches can map the evolution and transit of tumour cells throughout an individual patient.
A series of recent studies have demonstrated that a prostate tumour is often composed of different subclones, with varying genetic similarity. As such, a single biopsy specimen may be insufficient to make accurate clinical predictions from molecular biomarkers, greatly complicating the application of biopsy-based tools for precision medicine. In addition, subclones that arise outside of the primary tumour can seed new metastases and circulate between sites within a patient.
The mutational complexity of multiple tumour clones within the same individual, which respond differently to specific treatments, suggests the need for multimodal interventions.