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Molecular biomarkers – an introduction

This article was originally published in Clinica

Executive Summary

The use of biomarkers for the diagnosis of diseases is as old as the profession of the healer in human society. Once healthcare was established on a scientific and empirical basis, biomarkers – such as heart rate or blood pressure – were understood to be physiological indicators that hinted at a disturbance of a body’s metabolism. For a long time, biomarkers in healthcare were at best unspecific, or at worst misleading, because the causes of disease were so poorly understood. This meant that treatment of patients was often suboptimal.

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