Cancer is composed of multiple cell populations with different genomes. This phenomenon called intratumor heterogeneity (ITH) is supposed to be a fundamental cause of therapeutic failure. Therefore, its principle-level understanding is a clinically important issue. To achieve this goal, an interdisciplinary approach combining genome analysis and mathematical modeling is essential. For example, we have recently performed multiregion sequencing to unveil extensive ITH in colorectal cancer. Moreover, by employing mathematical modeling of cancer evolution, we demonstrated that it is possible that this ITH is generated by neutral evolution. In this review, we introduce recent advances in a research field related to ITH and also discuss strategies for exploiting novel findings on ITH in a clinical setting.
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