Article

Stem Cell Reviews

, Volume 3, Issue 4, pp 249-255

First online:

Stem Cells and Cancer: An Overview

  • Kevin M. SalesAffiliated withBiomaterials & Tissue Engineering Centre, Academic Division of Surgical and Interventional Sciences, University College London
  • , Marc C. WinsletAffiliated withBiomaterials & Tissue Engineering Centre, Academic Division of Surgical and Interventional Sciences, University College LondonRoyal Free Hampstead NHS Trust Hospital
  • , Alexander M. SeifalianAffiliated withBiomaterials & Tissue Engineering Centre, Academic Division of Surgical and Interventional Sciences, University College LondonNanotechnology & Tissue Repair in Surgery, University College London Email author 

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Abstract

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.

Keywords

Cancer Stem cells Tumour