Thyroid carcinoma (TC) is the most common malignancy of endocrine organs with an increasing incidence in industrialized countries. The majority of TC are characterized by a good prognosis, even though cases with aggressive forms not cured by standard therapies are also present. Moreover, target therapies have led to low rates of partial response and prompted the emergence of resistance, indicating that new therapies are needed. In this review, we summarize current literature about the non-oncogene addiction (NOA) concept, which indicates that cancer cells, at variance with normal cells, rely on the activity of genes, usually not mutated or aberrantly expressed, essential for coping with the transformed phenotype. We highlight the potential of non-oncogenes as a point of intervention for cancer therapy in general, and present evidence for new putative non-oncogenes that are essential for TC survival and that may constitute attractive new therapeutic targets.
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