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Open AccessFeature PaperReview

Neuroendocrine Changes in Cholangiocarcinoma Growth

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Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Department of Medicine, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN 46202, USA
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Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center, Indianapolis, IN 46202, USA
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Department of Medical Physiology, Texas A&M University College of Medicine, Bryan, TX 77807, USA
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Division of Transplant Surgery, Department of Surgery, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN 46202, USA
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Liver Unit, Department of Medicine, University of Rome “Tor Vergata”, 00133 Rome, Italy
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Department of Anatomical, Histological, Forensic Medicine and Orthopedics Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome, 00185 Rome, Italy
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Eleonora Lorillard Spencer Cenci Foundation, 00185 Rome, Italy
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Cells 2020, 9(2), 436; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells9020436
Received: 28 January 2020 / Revised: 9 February 2020 / Accepted: 11 February 2020 / Published: 13 February 2020
Cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) is a highly aggressive malignancy that emerges from the biliary tree. There are three major classes of CCA—intrahepatic, hilar (perihilar), or distal (extrahepatic)—according to the location of tumor development. Although CCA tumors are mainly derived from biliary epithelia (i.e., cholangiocytes), CCA can be originated from other cells, such as hepatic progenitor cells and hepatocytes. This heterogeneity of CCA may be responsible for poor survival rates of patients, limited effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and the lack of treatment options and novel therapies. Previous studies have identified a number of neuroendocrine mediators, such as hormones, neuropeptides, and neurotransmitters, as well as corresponding receptors. The mediator/receptor signaling pathways play a vital role in cholangiocyte proliferation, as well as CCA progression and metastases. Agonists or antagonists for candidate pathways may lead to the development of novel therapies for CCA patients. However, effects of mediators may differ between healthy or cancerous cholangiocytes, or between different subtypes of receptors. This review summarizes current understandings of neuroendocrine mediators and their functional roles in CCA. View Full-Text
Keywords: cholangiocarcinoma; cholangiocytes; ductular reaction; liver fibrosis; neurotransmitters; neuropeptides; hormones cholangiocarcinoma; cholangiocytes; ductular reaction; liver fibrosis; neurotransmitters; neuropeptides; hormones
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sato, K.; Francis, H.; Zhou, T.; Meng, F.; Kennedy, L.; Ekser, B.; Baiocchi, L.; Onori, P.; Mancinelli, R.; Gaudio, E.; Franchitto, A.; Glaser, S.; Alpini, G. Neuroendocrine Changes in Cholangiocarcinoma Growth. Cells 2020, 9, 436.

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