Nice interests. I'd like to say though, the fourfold noble truth is the very foundation of all the Buddha's teaching, and the beginning of Buddhist tradition throughout the world. The Noble Eightfold Path is simply the very way to increasing enlightenment, and eventual cessation of suffering (it is actually the fourth noble truth).
But actually, the Buddha said this: "Those who understand dependent origination, understand the Dhamma." (absolute teaching, dharma means truth and refers to ultimate reality). So dependent origination, deep, subtle, and difficult to perceive as it is, is actually the heart of Buddhism.