Tumor Profiling

Tumor profiling is the processes of scanning genetic information (DNA, RNA) or proteins from a patient’s tumor to understand what molecules are driving cancer to grow.


Tumor profiling tests are ordered by a medical oncologist and may help in identifying specific drugs that target these molecules. These tests may also be called genomic testing, tumor testing or molecular testing.

In the past, patients with the same type of cancer usually got the same treatment. Over time, doctors noticed the treatments worked better for some people than others. Then, researchers began finding genetic differences in people and their cancers even with the same cancer type. These differences explained a great deal about why people responded differently to the same treatment.

Today, your doctor may have the opportunity to personalize your cancer treatment based on information about your cancer’s genes. This is also called personalized cancer medicine. One example of personalized cancer medicine is targeted therapy. Targeted Therapy targets specific genes and proteins that allow a certain cancer to grow and survive.

Tumor profiling isn’t equally effective for all cancers and this is true for ACC. While tumor profiling may provide important information when exploring systemic therapy, there are some limitations:

Where to get a tumor profile

Some cancer centers provide tumor profiling for their patients. If not, your medical oncologist may contact one of the following organizations with tumor profiling services.

Foundation Medicine
Guardant 360
Caris Molecular Intelligence
Personal Genome Diagnostics
The Memorial Sloan Kettering Make-an-IMPACT initiative provides free genome testing for Pediatric Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma