Attacking Cancer Stem Cells in Ovarian Cancer

Via ScienceDaily: "Eliminating cancer stem cells (CSCs) within a tumor could hold the key to successful treatments for ovarian cancer ... Ovarian cancer has been challenging to treat because it tends to recur frequently and develop resistance to treatment. ... This recurrence and drug resistance may be due to the presence of CSCs within the tumors that have the capacity to reproduce and to differentiate into non-CSC tumor cells that repopulate the tumor mass. Eliminating these CSCs may be key to successful treatments. ... While in the process of studying the functions of stem cell proteins in human embryonic stem cells, [researchers] unexpectedly discovered that a sub-population of ovarian cancer cells express stem cell proteins Lin28 and Oct4, [both of which are known markers of embryonic or embryonic-like stem cells]. They also found that the two proteins appear to act together in ovarian cancer tissue cells to produce more advanced tumors. Inhibiting their combined expression led to a significant decrease in the growth and survival of cancer cells. A larger-scale ovarian cancer study is currently underway to confirm the significance of the findings."


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