Stem Cell Biology in Health and Disease

pp 295-326


Cancer Stem Cells in Solid Tumors

  • Melia G. NafusAffiliated withDepartment of Biomedical Sciences, Cornell University
  • , Alexander Yu. NikitinAffiliated withDepartment of Biomedical Sciences, Cornell University Email author 

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Confirmation and assessment of general applicability of cancer stem cell concept towards solid tumors greatly depends on development of reliable approaches to selectively identify populations of neoplastic cells carrying “stemness” features, such as extensive capacity for self-renewal and ability to undergo a range of differentiation events. This chapter describes such assays as sphere formation, side population isolation and cancer stem cell marker detection and addresses their potential pitfalls. Also discussed are the cell of origin of stem cells and remaining challenges in solid tumor stem cell research.


Brain Breast Cell of origin Challenges Colon Head and neck Kidney Liver Ovary Pancreas Prostate Side population Skin Solid tumor Sphere assay Stem cell markers