Targeting Pancreatic Cancer Cell Plasticity: The Latest in Therapeutics
AbstractMortality remains alarmingly high for patients diagnosed with pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), with 93% succumbing to the disease within five years. The vast majority of PDAC cases are driven by activating mutations in the proto-oncogene KRAS, which results in constitutive proliferation and survival signaling. As efforts to target RAS and its downstream effectors continue, parallel research aimed at identifying novel targets is also needed in order to improve therapeutic options and efficacy. Recent studies demonstrate that self-renewing cancer stem cells (CSCs) contribute to metastatic dissemination and therapy failure, the causes of mortality from PDAC. Here, we discuss current challenges in PDAC therapeutics, highlight the contribution of mesenchymal/CSC plasticity to PDAC pathogenesis, and propose that targeting the drivers of plasticity will prove beneficial. Increasingly, intrinsic oncogenic and extrinsic pro-growth/survival signaling emanating from the tumor microenvironment (TME) are being implicated in the de novo generation of CSC and regulation of tumor cell plasticity. An improved understanding of key regulators of PDAC plasticity is providing new potential avenues for targeting the properties associated with CSC (including enhanced invasion and migration, metastatic outgrowth, and resistance to therapy). Finally, we describe the growing field of therapeutics directed at cancer stem cells and cancer cell plasticity in order to improve the lives of patients with PDAC. View Full-Text
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Smigiel, J.M.; Parameswaran, N.; Jackson, M.W. Targeting Pancreatic Cancer Cell Plasticity: The Latest in Therapeutics. Cancers 2018, 10, 14.
Smigiel JM, Parameswaran N, Jackson MW. Targeting Pancreatic Cancer Cell Plasticity: The Latest in Therapeutics. Cancers. 2018; 10(1):14.Chicago/Turabian Style
Smigiel, Jacob M.; Parameswaran, Neetha; Jackson, Mark W. 2018. "Targeting Pancreatic Cancer Cell Plasticity: The Latest in Therapeutics." Cancers 10, no. 1: 14.
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