Stem cell

Cancer stem cells

Cancer Stem Cell (CSC) or tumor-initiating cell is known as "a cell within a tumor that has the capacity to self-renew and to cause the heterogeneous lineages of cancer cells that comprise the tumor." The cancer stem cell theory proposes that undifferentiated cells in cancers do not arise from differentiated cells through different mutations. In fact, very rare population of cells named cancer stem cells (CSCs) that are characterized as undifferentiated or poorly differentiated 'stem cells' are the primary origin of all cancer cells. They retain self-renewality and gradually lose the ability to generate differentiated progenies, giving rise to progressively less differentiated and more drug-resistant tumor cells. Existence of CSC is proposed in leukemia, brain, breast, ovarian, prostate and colon cancers. If therapies fail to target the tumorigenic cells, then these cells would persist after therapy and be able to regenerate the tumor, resulting in tumor relapse. Understanding the biology of cancer stem cells has significant notes for developing therapeutic strategies in different types of tumors.
Shiraz University of Medical Sciences
Shiraz Institute for Cancer Research (ICR)
P.O. Box: 71345-3119
Tel: +98(0)71 32303687
Fax: +98(0)71 32304952