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Genes 2015, 6(4), 1053-1075; doi:10.3390/genes6041053

Characterization of DNA Methylation in Circulating Tumor Cells

1
Department of General, Visceral and Pediatric Surgery, University Hospital and Medical Faculty of the Heinrich-Heine University Düsseldorf, Moorenstr. 5, 40225 Düsseldorf, Germany
2
Department of Urology, University Hospital and Medical Faculty of the Heinrich-Heine University Düsseldorf, Universitätsstr. 1, 40225 Düsseldorf, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Jeffrey Craig and Thomas Mikeska
Received: 3 July 2015 / Revised: 9 October 2015 / Accepted: 14 October 2015 / Published: 21 October 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Epigenetic Biomarkers)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1499 KB, uploaded 21 October 2015]   |  

Abstract

Epigenetics contributes to molecular mechanisms leading to tumor cell transformation and systemic progression of cancer. However, the dynamics of epigenetic remodeling during metastasis remains unexplored. In this context, circulating tumor cells (CTCs) might enable a direct insight into epigenetic mechanisms relevant for metastasis by providing direct access to systemic cancer. CTCs can be used as prognostic markers in cancer patients and are regarded as potential metastatic precursor cells. However, despite substantial technical progress, the detection and molecular characterization of CTCs remain challenging, in particular the analysis of DNA methylation. As recent studies have started to address the epigenetic state of CTCs, we discuss here the potential of such investigations to elucidate mechanisms of metastasis and to develop tumor biomarkers. View Full-Text
Keywords: circulating tumor cells; CTC; molecular analyses; epigenetics; DNA methylation circulating tumor cells; CTC; molecular analyses; epigenetics; DNA methylation
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Pixberg, C.F.; Schulz, W.A.; Stoecklein, N.H.; Neves, R.P.L. Characterization of DNA Methylation in Circulating Tumor Cells. Genes 2015, 6, 1053-1075.

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