Stem Cells and Cancer: An Overview
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- Sales, K.M., Winslet, M.C. & Seifalian, A.M. Stem Cell Rev (2007) 3: 249. doi:10.1007/s12015-007-9002-0
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Definite evidence of the importance of cancer stem cells in the progression of cancer has now come to light. Key markers of these cells have been identified in many solid tumours as well as leukaemias. Specific studies modelling the tumour induction of specific cells isolated by surface antigens such as CD44 have demonstrated that these cells are not only present in tumours but that they are the key units in their tumourgenecity. These findings provide useful insight for disease progression, treatment and metastasis. The wide variety of proposed markers, and their similarity to endothelial progenitor cells found in angiogenesis, complicates these studies. Definite proof falls only in the induction of tumours in vivo. Here we review the developments in cancer stem cells and the markers that have been found for these cells.