, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 994-1010
Date: 26 Jan 2012

Overcoming Challenges of Ovarian Cancer Stem Cells: Novel Therapeutic Approaches

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Abstract

Understanding the genetic and molecular mechanisms of ovarian cancer has been the focus of research efforts working toward the greater goal of improving cancer therapy for patients with residual disease after initial treatment with conventional surgery and neoadjuvant chemotherapy. The focus of this review will be centered on new therapeutic strategies based on Cancer Stem Cells studies of chemoresistant subpopulations, the prevention of metastasis, and individualized therapy in order to find the most successful combination of treatments to effectively treat human ovarian cancer. We reviewed recent literature (1993–2011) of novel treatment approaches to ovarian cancer stem cells. As the focus of ovarian cancer investigation has centered on the cancer stem cell model and the complexities that it presents in the development of effective treatments, the future of treating ovarian cancer lies in utilizing individualized treatment systems that include enhancing existing treatments, aiming for novel therapy targets, managing the plasticity of stem cells to induce cellular differentiation, and regulating oncogenic signaling pathways.

Cristóbal Aguilar-Gallardo, Emily Cecilia Rutledge and Ana M. Martínez-Arroyo have contributed equally to this work