Rapid Reprogramming of Tumor Cells into Cancer Stem Cells on Double-Network Hydrogels

Researchers showed that a double-network hydrogel could rapidly reprogram differentiated cancer cells into cancer stem cells.
[Nature Biomedical Engineering]
Suzuka, J., Tsuda, M., Wang, L., Kohsaka, S., Kishida, K., Semba, S., Sugino, H., Aburatani, S., Frauenlob, M., Kurokawa, T., Kojima, S., Ueno, T., Ohmiya, Y., Mano, H., Yasuda, K., Gong, J. P., & Tanaka, S. (2021). Rapid reprogramming of tumour cells into cancer stem cells on double-network hydrogels. Nature Biomedical Engineering, 1–12. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41551-021-00692-2 Cite
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Zinc‐Finger E‐Box‐Binding Homeobox 1 (ZEB1) Plays a Crucial Role in the Maintenance of Lung Cancer Stem Cells Resistant to Gefitinib

PC9 and HCC827 non‐small cell lung cancer cell lines were treated with high concentrations of gefitinib, and surviving cells were referred to as “gefitinib‐resistant persisters” (GRPs). Zinc‐finger E‐box‐binding homeobox 1 (ZEB1) knockdown or overexpression was performed to determine the biological significance of ZEB1 in the cancer stem cell features of GRPs, and animal models were studied for in vivo validation.
[Thoracic Cancer]
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Cancer-Associated Fibroblasts-Mediated ATF4 Expression Promotes Malignancy and Gemcitabine Resistance in Pancreatic Cancer via the TGF-β1/SMAD2/3 Pathway and ABCC1 Transactivation

The authors investigated the potential role and mechanisms of activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) in cancer-associated fibroblasts-induced malignancy and gemcitabine resistance. They demonstrated that ATF4 was overexpressed in PDAC and associated with a poor prognosis.
[Cell Death & Disease]
Wei, L., Lin, Q., Lu, Y., Li, G., Huang, L., Fu, Z., Chen, R., & Zhou, Q. (2021). Cancer-associated fibroblasts-mediated ATF4 expression promotes malignancy and gemcitabine resistance in pancreatic cancer via the TGF-β1/SMAD2/3 pathway and ABCC1 transactivation. Cell Death & Disease, 12(4), 1–14. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41419-021-03574-2 Cite
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Polyploid Giant Cancer Cells, Stemness and Epithelial-Mesenchymal Plasticity Elicited by Human Cytomegalovirus

Human cytomegalovirus presence paralleled the succession of the observed cellular and molecular events potentially ensuing the transformation process.
[Oncogene]
Nehme, Z., Pasquereau, S., Haidar Ahmad, S., Coaquette, A., Molimard, C., Monnien, F., Algros, M.-P., Adotevi, O., Diab Assaf, M., Feugeas, J.-P., & Herbein, G. (2021). Polyploid giant cancer cells, stemness and epithelial-mesenchymal plasticity elicited by human cytomegalovirus. Oncogene, 1–17. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41388-021-01715-7 Cite
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Co-Dependency for MET and FGFR1 in Basal Triple-Negative Breast Cancers

Investigators utilized an established Met-dependent transgenic mouse model of TNBC, human cell lines and patient-derived xenografts to investigate the role of MET in TNBC tumorigenesis.
[npj Breast Cancer]
Sung, V. Y. C., Knight, J. F., Johnson, R. M., Stern, Y. E., Saleh, S. M., Savage, P., Monast, A., Zuo, D., Duhamel, S., & Park, M. (2021). Co-dependency for MET and FGFR1 in basal triple-negative breast cancers. Npj Breast Cancer, 7(1), 1–15. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41523-021-00238-4 Cite
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Faciogenital Dysplasia 5 Supports Cancer Stem Cell Traits in Basal-Like Breast Cancer by Enhancing EGFR Stability

Scientists performed the basal-like breast cancers (BLBC) tissue microarray–based immunohistochemical analysis and showed that Faciogenital Dysplasia 5 (FGD5) abundance is associated with poor prognosis in BLBCs. FGD5 deletion decreased the proliferation, invasion, and tumorsphere formation capacity of BLBC cells.
[Science Translational Medicine]
Li, K., Zhang, T., Zhao, C., Wang, F., Cui, B., Yang, Z., Lv, X., Yeerjiang, Z., Yuan, Y., Yu, J., Wang, Z., Zhang, X., Yu, J., Liu, S., Shang, S., Huang, B., Hua, F., & Hu, Z. (2021). Faciogenital Dysplasia 5 supports cancer stem cell traits in basal-like breast cancer by enhancing EGFR stability. Science Translational Medicine, 13(586). https://doi.org/10.1126/scitranslmed.abb2914 Cite
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Detection of Clustered Circulating Tumor Cells in Early Breast Cancer

Exploiting nanostructured titanium oxide-coated slides for shear-free circulating tumor cell (CTC) identification, scientists detected clustered CTCs in the curative setting of multiple patients with early breast cancer prior to surgical treatment, highlighting their presence already at early disease stages.
[British Journal of Cancer]
Krol, I., Schwab, F. D., Carbone, R., Ritter, M., Picocci, S., De Marni, M. L., Stepien, G., Franchi, G. M., Zanardi, A., Rissoglio, M. D., Covelli, A., Guidi, G., Scarinci, D., Castro-Giner, F., Mazzarella, L., Doglioni, C., Borghi, F., Milani, P., Kurzeder, C., … Aceto, N. (2021). Detection of clustered circulating tumour cells in early breast cancer. British Journal of Cancer, 1–5. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41416-021-01327-8 Cite
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Cancer Stem Cells in Colorectal Cancer and the Association with Chemotherapy Resistance

The characteristic surface markers of cancer stem cells and the related mechanism of drug resistance are discussed in detail by the authors.
[Medical Oncology]
Lei, X., He, Q., Li, Z., Zou, Q., Xu, P., Yu, H., Ding, Y., & Zhu, W. (2021). Cancer stem cells in colorectal cancer and the association with chemotherapy resistance. Medical Oncology, 38(4), 43. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12032-021-01488-9 Cite
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SOCS6 Promotes Radiosensitivity and Decreases Cancer Cell Stemness in Esophageal Squamous Cell Carcinoma by Regulating C-Kit Ubiquitylation

57 esophageal (ESCC) patients were enrolled for survival analysis. SOCS6 was stably overexpressed in HPV+ ESCC and ESCC cells, and cells were treated with radiation and then subjected to colony formation assays.
[Cancer Cell International]
Sun, X., Sun, Y., Li, J., Zhao, X., Shi, X., Gong, T., Pan, S., Zheng, Z., & Zhang, X. (2021). SOCS6 promotes radiosensitivity and decreases cancer cell stemness in esophageal squamous cell carcinoma by regulating c-Kit ubiquitylation. Cancer Cell International, 21(1), 165. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12935-021-01859-2 Cite
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CircFAM73A Promotes the Cancer Stem Cell-Like Properties of Gastric Cancer through the miR-490-3p/HMGA2 Positive Feedback Loop and HNRNPK-Mediated β-Catenin Stabilization

The roles of circFAM73A in gastric cancer cell proliferation, migration, cisplatin resistance, and CSC-like properties were determined by a series of functional experiments both in vitro and in vivo.
[Journal of Experimental & Clinical Cancer Research]
Xia, Y., Lv, J., Jiang, T., Li, B., Li, Y., He, Z., Xuan, Z., Sun, G., Wang, S., Li, Z., Wang, W., Wang, L., & Xu, Z. (2021). CircFAM73A promotes the cancer stem cell-like properties of gastric cancer through the miR-490-3p/HMGA2 positive feedback loop and HNRNPK-mediated β-catenin stabilization. Journal of Experimental & Clinical Cancer Research, 40(1), 103. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13046-021-01896-9 Cite
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Novel Molecular Regulators of Breast Cancer Stem Cell Plasticity and Heterogeneity

Investigators summarized the novel regulators existed in breast cancer stem cells (BCSCs) and their niches for BCSC heterogeneity which has been discovered in recent years, and discuss their regulation mechanisms and the latest corresponding cancer treatments.
[Seminars in Cancer Biology]
Zhang, R., Tu, J., & Liu, S. (2021). Novel molecular regulators of breast cancer stem cell plasticity and heterogeneity. Seminars in Cancer Biology. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.semcancer.2021.03.008 Cite
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