Reviews: Right on target: eradicating leukemic stem cells by Daniela Krause & Richard Van Etten

by Alexey Bersenev on March 31, 2008 · 1 comment

in cancer stem cell, reviews

Leukemic stem cell – one of the hottest topic in stem cell and cancer research.

Recent review about targeting of leukemic stem cells published in Trends in Molecular Medicine

Only leukemic blasts with the immature cell-surface phenotype CD34+CD38-, comprising a minority of the total population, were capable of transferring AML to immunodeficient severe combined immunodeficiency (SCID) mice [2]. This and related observations led to the cancer stem-cell hypothesis, which postulates that many tumors are maintained by a small population of stem-like cancer cells that have the capacity for indefinite self-renewal [3]. If this hypothesis is correct, cancer must either originate from normal tissue stem cells that already possess the capacity for self-renewal or else this property is acquired aberrantly during tumorigenesis [4,5].

This picture shows some potential therapeutic targets for eradication of myeloid leukemic stem cells (credit: Daniela Krause & Richard Van Etten, 2008):


Cancer stem cells are defined functionally by their ability to transfer the malignancy on xenotransplantation into an immunodeficient recipient animal, usually non-obese diabetic (NOD) –SCID mice; hence, the terms ‘cancer-initiating’ or ‘tumorigenic’ cells might be more accurate.

LSCs are also postulated, but not proven, to be responsible for a familiar and frustrating clinical scenario – the relapse of disease following a remission induced by cytotoxic or targeted therapy.

Exellent review! Must have it!

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cc March 31, 2008 at 6:50 pm

Nice review article. I don’t know much about cancer stem cells and AML, what I know is just textbook knowledge and from lectures. Let’s hope for efficient targeted therapies for LSCs!

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