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Open AccessReview

Ovarian Cancer Stemness: Biological and Clinical Implications for Metastasis and Chemotherapy Resistance

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of Life Sciences, Kumamoto University, Honjo 1-1-1, Kumamoto City, Kumamoto 860-8556, Japan
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Cancers 2019, 11(7), 907;
Received: 10 June 2019 / Revised: 24 June 2019 / Accepted: 26 June 2019 / Published: 28 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ovarian Cancer Metastasis)
PDF [1021 KB, uploaded 28 June 2019]
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Epithelial ovarian cancer is a highly lethal gynecological malignancy that is characterized by the early development of disseminated metastasis. Though ovarian cancer has been generally considered to preferentially metastasize via direct transcoelomic dissemination instead of the hematogenous route, emerging evidence has indicated that the hematogenous spread of cancer cells plays a larger role in ovarian cancer metastasis than previously thought. Considering the distinctive biology of ovarian cancer, an in-depth understanding of the biological and molecular mechanisms that drive metastasis is critical for developing effective therapeutic strategies against this fatal disease. The recent “cancer stem cell theory” postulates that cancer stem cells are principally responsible for tumor initiation, metastasis, and chemotherapy resistance. Even though the hallmarks of ovarian cancer stem cells have not yet been completely elucidated, metastasized ovarian cancer cells, which have a high degree of chemoresistance, seem to manifest cancer stem cell properties and play a key role during relapse at metastatic sites. Herein, we review our current understanding of the cell-biological mechanisms that regulate ovarian cancer metastasis and chemotherapy resistance, with a pivotal focus on ovarian cancer stem cells, and discuss the potential clinical implications of evolving cancer stem cell research and resultant novel therapeutic approaches. View Full-Text
Keywords: ovarian cancer; cancer stem cell; metastasis; chemotherapy resistance ovarian cancer; cancer stem cell; metastasis; chemotherapy resistance

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Motohara, T.; Katabuchi, H. Ovarian Cancer Stemness: Biological and Clinical Implications for Metastasis and Chemotherapy Resistance. Cancers 2019, 11, 907.

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