Unlike other deep cancers, oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC), which occurs in the oral cavity, is more easily monitored, and specimens for diagnosis are easier to collect. However, identifying reliable and sensitive markers for the early diagnosis and markers for identification of the recurrence of OSCC remains a challenge. This article mainly focused on reviewing recently identified potential biomarkers for a cytologic diagnosis during OSCC development. In addition, markers used in modern diagnostic technologies, including a sensitive labeling method and a photodynamic approach for cytologic diagnosis, are also described. Cytologic examinations using sensitive and specific biomarkers can improve the accuracy of the diagnosis. Hence, they can lead to appropriate treatment without delay and to the reduced recurrence of OSCC.
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