Advanced training in molecular pathology can be undertaken by doctors who are already specialists in pathology. Molecular pathology specialists are specifically trained to carry out and interpret molecular biological examinations on cells, tissue and bodily fluids.
Molecular pathology refers to the examination of the effects of disease at the molecular level, in other words, the effects of disease in individual molecules and chemical compounds within the body. Molecular assessments often involve the examination of genetic material, such as nuclei, chromosomes and DNA. Such examinations are used to provide evidence of genetic defects, mutations, hereditary diseases and specific changes in tumours or infectious diseases. However, in certain circumstances, a molecular examination can also be used to evaluate the success of medical treatment, for example in the case of particular types of leukaemia.
Pathologists with a specialisation in molecular pathology often work together with oncologists and other specialists. Their examinations contribute towards a better understanding of diseases, enable precise diagnoses and help to determine the best possible treatment for a variety of illnesses.