Prioritize addressing the cancer STEM cells

Dr. Weeks’ Comment:  We know too much to ignore cancer stem cells.  Ask your oncologist what he or she is doing to address your cancer STEM cells – I urge him or her to make it a “priority” to focus here..

“…We propose that a better understanding of this fundamental property of breast cancer stem cells, over and above their identification in tumours, is a priority for improvement of patient survival…”

 

 

Cancer Lett. 2012 Apr 30. [Epub ahead of print]

Breast cancer stem cells: obstacles to therapy.

Source

European Cancer Stem Cell Research Institute, University of Cardiff.

Abstract

Only a fraction of the cells in a breast tumour are able to seed new tumour growth. These so-called breast cancer stem cells(bCSCs) are characterized by a number of discrete functional properties, some of which impact on therapeutic strategies aimed at eliminating these cells from tumours.

Here we discuss how recent experimental evidence indicates that phenotypic plasticity is a central feature of tumour cell heterogeneity and drug resistance, traits that must be overcome in order to efficiently target bCSCs as a therapy for breast cancer.

We propose that a better understanding of this fundamental property of breast cancer stem cells, over and above their identification in tumours, is a priority for improvement of patient survival.

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