News From the College

AJCC Releases Cancer Staging Manual, Eighth Edition


The American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) has released the eighth edition of TNM Cancer Staging Manual, which reflects current understanding of cancer biology concepts and emphasizes a more individualized approach to cancer classification and treatment. This edition presents evidence-based revisions for staging cancer for a number of organ sites and includes the rationales and rules for staging; the definitions of tumor, lymph node involvement, and metastasis; stage groupings; and histologic grade.

Cancer staging provides patients and physicians with the standards for determining the best treatment approach for their disease and their prognosis. Mahul B. Amin, MD, FCAP, Editor-in-Chief of the Eighth Edition, noted that 430 experts from 184 institutions in 22 countries on six continents collaborated to produce this resource. Dr. Amin is professor and chairman emeritus, department of pathology and laboratory medicine, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA, and incoming chairman and endowed professor of the department of pathology and laboratory medicine at the University of Tennessee Health Sciences Center, Memphis.

Since the Seventh Edition of the manual was published in 2009, researchers and medical practitioners have learned that genomic alterations drive cancer and may vary considerably among tumors that, in the past, were thought to be in the same category, Dr. Amin said.

The American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer will require accredited hospitals to use the Eighth Edition for all cancer cases diagnosed on or after January 1, 2017. The manual, developed in cooperation with the TNM Committee of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), is available for purchase online at

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