Tumour budding in solid cancers.

Lugli, Alessandro; Zlobec, Inti; Berger, Martin D.; Kirsch, Richard; Nagtegaal, Iris D (2021). Tumour budding in solid cancers. Nature reviews. Clinical oncology, 18(2), pp. 101-115. Springer Nature 10.1038/s41571-020-0422-y

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Tumour budding is an emerging prognostic biomarker in colorectal cancer (CRC) and other solid cancers. Tumour buds are usually defined as isolated single cancer cells or clusters of up to four cancer cells located at the invasive tumour front. The prognostic value of tumour budding is now supported by a large body of evidence, whereas the utility of this phenotype as a predictive biomarker remains under investigation. The application of tumour budding indices in clinical practice requires a standardized scoring system that can be tailored to specific tumour types and clinical scenarios. In the context of CRC, tumour budding can be assessed according to the method agreed at the International Tumour Budding Consensus Conference (ITBCC) in 2016. Using the ITBCC scoring system, tumour budding is an independent predictor of lymph node metastasis in patients with pT1 CRC and of unfavourable survival in patients with stage II colon cancer. Regardless of the clinical scenario or tumour type, the assertion that 'the more tumour buds, the worse the clinical outcome' applies. In this Review, we provide an overview of tumour budding in solid cancers, highlighting the molecular and biological aspects of this phenomenon, including its associations with epithelial-mesenchymal transition and features of the tumour microenvironment. We also describe the available evidence demonstrating the value of tumour budding as a biomarker across various solid cancers.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Review Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Pathology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Pathology > Translational Research Unit
04 Faculty of Medicine > Service Sector > Institute of Pathology > Clinical Pathology
04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Haematology, Oncology, Infectious Diseases, Laboratory Medicine and Hospital Pharmacy (DOLS) > Clinic of Medical Oncology

UniBE Contributor:

Lugli, Alessandro; Zlobec, Inti and Berger, Martin Dave


500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health




Springer Nature




Rebeka Gerber

Date Deposited:

12 Nov 2020 12:06

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 15:41

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:






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