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Biomedicines 2018, 6(2), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines6020050

Mammary Stem Cells and Breast Cancer Stem Cells: Molecular Connections and Clinical Implications

Cancer Research Program, IMIM (Hospital del Mar Medical Research Institute), 08003 Barcelona, Spain
Received: 5 March 2018 / Revised: 29 March 2018 / Accepted: 31 March 2018 / Published: 4 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Stem Cells and Cancer Therapeutics)
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Abstract

Cancer arises from subpopulations of transformed cells with high tumor initiation and repopulation ability, known as cancer stem cells (CSCs), which share many similarities with their normal counterparts. In the mammary gland, several studies have shown common molecular regulators between adult mammary stem cells (MaSCs) and breast cancer stem cells (bCSCs). Cell plasticity and self-renewal are essential abilities for MaSCs to maintain tissue homeostasis and regenerate the gland after pregnancy. Intriguingly, these properties are similarly executed in breast cancer stem cells to drive tumor initiation, tumor heterogeneity and recurrence after chemotherapy. In addition, both stem cell phenotypes are strongly influenced by external signals from the microenvironment, immune cells and supportive specific niches. This review focuses on the intrinsic and extrinsic connections of MaSC and bCSCs with clinical implications for breast cancer progression and their possible therapeutic applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: mammary stem cells; cancer stem cells; cell plasticity; immune interplay; tumor microenvironment; targeting CSCs mammary stem cells; cancer stem cells; cell plasticity; immune interplay; tumor microenvironment; targeting CSCs
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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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Celià-Terrassa, T. Mammary Stem Cells and Breast Cancer Stem Cells: Molecular Connections and Clinical Implications. Biomedicines 2018, 6, 50.

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