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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17(9), 1587; doi:10.3390/ijms17091587

Cancer Cell Fusion: Mechanisms Slowly Unravel

1
Department of Biology, Jackson State University, Jackson, MS 39217, USA
2
Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA
3
Stem Cell Institute, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA
4
Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA
5
Lillehei Heart Institute, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA
6
Institute for Engineering and Medicine, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Thomas Dittmar and Lajos Kemény
Received: 28 July 2016 / Revised: 26 August 2016 / Accepted: 12 September 2016 / Published: 21 September 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cell Fusion in Cancer)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [411 KB, uploaded 22 September 2016]   |  

Abstract

Although molecular mechanisms and signaling pathways driving invasion and metastasis have been studied for many years, the origin of the population of metastatic cells within the primary tumor is still not well understood. About a century ago, Aichel proposed that cancer cell fusion was a mechanism of cancer metastasis. This hypothesis gained some support over the years, and recently became the focus of many studies that revealed increasing evidence pointing to the possibility that cancer cell fusion probably gives rise to the metastatic phenotype by generating widespread genetic and epigenetic diversity, leading to the emergence of critical populations needed to evolve resistance to the treatment and development of metastasis. In this review, we will discuss the clinical relevance of cancer cell fusion, describe emerging mechanisms of cancer cell fusion, address why inhibiting cancer cell fusion could represent a critical line of attack to limit drug resistance and to prevent metastasis, and suggest one new modality for doing so. View Full-Text
Keywords: cell fusion; genomic instability; phosphatidyl serine receptor; metastasis; genetic diversity cell fusion; genomic instability; phosphatidyl serine receptor; metastasis; genetic diversity
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Noubissi, F.K.; Ogle, B.M. Cancer Cell Fusion: Mechanisms Slowly Unravel. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2016, 17, 1587.

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