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Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15(5), 8169-8185;

Cancer Stem Cells: Biological Functions and Therapeutically Targeting

Faculty of Medicine, University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Craiova, Str. Petru Rares nr. 2-4, Craiova 710204, Romania
Stem Cell Bank Unit, Medico Science SRL, Str. Brazda lui Novac nr. 1B, Craiova 200690, Romania
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 23 March 2014 / Revised: 20 April 2014 / Accepted: 24 April 2014 / Published: 9 May 2014
(This article belongs to the Section Biochemistry)
Full-Text   |   PDF [425 KB, uploaded 19 June 2014]


Almost all tumors are composed of a heterogeneous cell population, making them difficult to treat. A small cancer stem cell population with a low proliferation rate and a high tumorigenic potential is thought to be responsible for cancer development, metastasis and resistance to therapy. Stem cells were reported to be involved in both normal development and carcinogenesis, some molecular mechanisms being common in both processes. No less controversial, stem cells are considered to be important in treatment of malignant diseases both as targets and drug carriers. The efforts to understand the role of different signalling in cancer stem cells requires in depth knowledge about the mechanisms that control their self-renewal, differentiation and malignant potential. The aim of this paper is to discuss insights into cancer stem cells historical background and to provide a brief review of the new therapeutic strategies for targeting cancer stem cells. View Full-Text
Keywords: cancer stem cell; tumorigenicity; signalling pathways; cancer stem cell markers; cancer therapy cancer stem cell; tumorigenicity; signalling pathways; cancer stem cell markers; cancer therapy
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Ciurea, M.E.; Georgescu, A.M.; Purcaru, S.O.; Artene, S.-A.; Emami, G.H.; Boldeanu, M.V.; Tache, D.E.; Dricu, A. Cancer Stem Cells: Biological Functions and Therapeutically Targeting. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2014, 15, 8169-8185.

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