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Androgen receptor signaling in prostate cancer development and progression
Peter E Lonergan, Donald J Tindall
2011, 10:20 (23 August 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.83937  PMID:21886458
The androgen receptor (AR) signaling axis plays a critical role in the development, function and homeostasis of the prostate. The classical action of AR is to regulate gene transcriptional processes via AR nuclear translocation, binding to androgen response elements on target genes and recruitment of, or crosstalk with, transcription factors. Prostate cancer initiation and progression is also uniquely dependent on AR. Androgen deprivation therapy remains the standard of care for treatment of advanced prostate cancer. Despite an initial favorable response, almost all patients invariably progress to a more aggressive, castrate-resistant phenotype. Considerable evidence now supports the concept that development of castrate-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) is causally related to continued transactivation of AR. Understanding the critical events and complexities of AR signaling in the progression to CRPC is essential in developing successful future therapies. This review provides a synopsis of AR structure and signaling in prostate cancer progression, with a special focus on recent findings on the role of AR in CRPC. Clinical implications of these findings and potential directions for future research are also outlined.
  56,608 2,503 51
The AOM/DSS murine model for the study of colon carcinogenesis: From pathways to diagnosis and therapy studies
Mariangela De Robertis, Emanuela Massi, Maria Luana Poeta, Simone Carotti, Sergio Morini, Loredana Cecchetelli, Emanuela Signori, Vito Michele Fazio
2011, 10:9 (24 March 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.78279  PMID:21483655
Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a major health problem in industrialized countries. Although inflammation-linked carcinogenesis is a well accepted concept and is often observed within the gastrointestinal tract, the underlying mechanisms remain to be elucidated. Inflammation can indeed provide initiating and promoting stimuli and mediators, generating a tumour-prone microenvironment. Many murine models of sporadic and inflammation-related colon carcinogenesis have been developed in the last decade, including chemically induced CRC models, genetically engineered mouse models, and xenoplants. Among the chemically induced CRC models, the combination of a single hit of azoxymethane (AOM) with 1 week exposure to the inflammatory agent dextran sodium sulphate (DSS) in rodents has proven to dramatically shorten the latency time for induction of CRC and to rapidly recapitulate the aberrant crypt foci-adenoma-carcinoma sequence that occurs in human CRC. Because of its high reproducibility and potency, as well as the simple and affordable mode of application, the AOM/DSS has become an outstanding model for studying colon carcinogenesis and a powerful platform for chemopreventive intervention studies. In this article we highlight the histopathological and molecular features and describe the principal genetic and epigenetic alterations and inflammatory pathways involved in carcinogenesis in AOM/DSS-treated mice; we also present a general overview of recent experimental applications and preclinical testing of novel therapeutics in the AOM/DSS model.
  47,851 537 28
Paget's disease of the breast
Cansu Karakas
2011, 10:31 (8 December 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.90676  PMID:22279416
Paget's disease of the breast is a rare type of cancer of the nipple-areola complex and that is often associated with an underlying in situ or invasive carcinoma. This article provides an overview and we review the main clinicopathological and therapeutic features of mammary Paget's disease.
  42,166 860 4
Reactive oxygen species: Role in the development of cancer and various chronic conditions
Gulam Waris, Haseeb Ahsan
2006, 5:14 (11 May 2006)
DOI:10.1186/1477-3163-5-14  PMID:16689993
Oxygen derived species such as superoxide radical, hydrogen peroxide, singlet oxygen and hydroxyl radical are well known to be cytotoxic and have been implicated in the etiology of a wide array of human diseases, including cancer. Various carcinogens may also partly exert their effect by generating reactive oxygen species (ROS) during their metabolism. Oxidative damage to cellular DNA can lead to mutations and may, therefore, play an important role in the initiation and progression of multistage carcinogenesis. The changes in DNA such as base modification, rearrangement of DNA sequence, miscoding of DNA lesion, gene duplication and the activation of oncogenes may be involved in the initiation of various cancers. Elevated levels of ROS and down regulation of ROS scavengers and antioxidant enzymes are associated with various human diseases including various cancers. ROS are also implicated in diabtes and neurodegenerative diseases. ROS influences central cellular processes such as proliferation a, apoptosis, senescence which are implicated in the development of cancer. Understanding the role of ROS as key mediators in signaling cascades may provide various opportunities for pharmacological intervention.
  33,888 2,311 249
Colorectal carcinogenesis: Review of human and experimental animal studies
Takuji Tanaka
2009, 8:5 (26 March 2009)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.49014  PMID:19332896
This review gives a comprehensive overview of cancer development and links it to the current understanding of tumorigenesis and malignant progression in colorectal cancer. The focus is on human and murine colorectal carcinogenesis and the histogenesis of this malignant disorder. A summary of a model of colitis-associated colon tumorigenesis (an AOM/DSS model) will also be presented. The earliest phases of colorectal oncogenesis occur in the normal mucosa, with a disorder of cell replication. The large majority of colorectal malignancies develop from an adenomatous polyp (adenoma). These can be defined as well-demarcated masses of epithelial dysplasia, with uncontrolled crypt cell proliferation. When neoplastic cells pass through the muscularis mucosa and infiltrate the submucosa, they are malignant. Carcinomas usually originate from pre-existing adenomas, but this does not imply that all polyps undergo malignant changes and does not exclude de novo oncogenesis. Besides adenomas, there are other types of pre-neoplasia, which include hyperplastic polyps, serrated adenomas, flat adenomas and dysplasia that occurs in the inflamed colon in associated with inflammatory bowel disease. Colorectal neoplasms cover a wide range of pre-malignant and malignant lesions, many of which can easily be removed during endoscopy if they are small. Colorectal neoplasms and/or pre-neoplasms can be prevented by interfering with the various steps of oncogenesis, which begins with uncontrolled epithelial cell replication, continues with the formation of adenomas and eventually evolves into malignancy. The knowledge described herein will help to reduce and prevent this malignancy, which is one of the most frequent neoplasms in some Western and developed countries.
  27,344 3,133 79
Oncogenic activation in prostate cancer progression and metastasis: Molecular insights and future challenges
Subhamoy Dasgupta, Srinivasa Srinidhi, Jamboor K Vishwanatha
2012, 11:4 (17 February 2012)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.93001  PMID:22438770
Prostate cancer is a leading cause of death among men in the United States, and currently early diagnosis and appropriate treatment remain key approaches for patient care. Molecularly prostate cancer cells carry multiple perturbations that generate malignant phenotype capable of uncontrolled growth, survival, and invasion-metastasis to other organs. These alterations are acquired both by genetic and epigenetic changes in tumor cells resulting in the activation of growth factor receptors, signaling proteins, kinases, transcription factors and coregulators, and multiple proteases required for the progression of the disease. Recent advances provide novel insights into the molecular functions of these oncogenic activators, implicating potential therapeutic targeting opportunities for the treatment of prostate cancer.
  28,492 1,526 10
Mouse models of estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer
Shakur Mohibi, Sameer Mirza, Hamid Band, Vimla Band
2011, 10:35 (22 December 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.91116  PMID:22279420
Breast cancer is the most frequent malignancy and second leading cause of cancer-related deaths among women. Despite advances in genetic and biochemical analyses, the incidence of breast cancer and its associated mortality remain very high. About 60 - 70% of breast cancers are Estrogen Receptor alpha (ER-α) positive and are dependent on estrogen for growth. Selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMs) have therefore provided an effective targeted therapy to treat ER-α positive breast cancer patients. Unfortunately, development of resistance to endocrine therapy is frequent and leads to cancer recurrence. Our understanding of molecular mechanisms involved in the development of ER-α positive tumors and their resistance to ER antagonists is currently limited due to lack of experimental models of ER-α positive breast cancer. In most mouse models of breast cancer, the tumors that form are typically ER-negative and independent of estrogen for their growth. However, in recent years more attention has been given to develop mouse models that develop different subtypes of breast cancers, including ER-positive tumors. In this review, we discuss the currently available mouse models that develop ER-α positive mammary tumors and their potential use to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of ER-α positive breast cancer development and endocrine resistance.
  26,339 1,335 8
Review of hepatocellular carcinoma: Epidemiology, etiology, and carcinogenesis
Yezaz Ahmed Ghouri, Idrees Mian, Julie H Rowe
2017, 16:1 (29 May 2017)
DOI:10.4103/jcar.JCar_9_16  PMID:28694740
Since the 1970s, the epidemic of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) has spread beyond the Eastern Asian predominance and has been increasing in Northern hemisphere, especially in the United States (US) and Western Europe. It occurs more commonly in males in the fourth and fifth decades of life. Among all cancers, HCC is one of the fastest growing causes of death in the US and poses a significant economic burden on healthcare. Chronic liver disease due to hepatitis B virus or hepatitis C virus and alcohol accounts for the majority of HCC cases. Incidence of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease has been on the risem and it has also been associated with the development of HCC. Its pathogenesis varies based on the underlying etiological factor although majority of cases develop in the setting of background cirrhosis. Carcinogenesis of HCC includes angiogenesis, chronic inflammation, and tumor macroenvironment and microenvironment. There is a significant role of both intrinsic genetic risk factors and extrinsic influences such as alcohol or viral infections that lead to the development of HCC. Understanding its etiopathogenesis helps select appropriate diagnostic tests and treatments.
  26,010 45 -
Wnt signaling and colon carcinogenesis: Beyond APC
Rani Najdi, Randall F Holcombe, Marian L Waterman
2011, 10:5 (17 March 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.78111  PMID:21483657
Activation of the Wnt signaling pathway via mutation of the adenomatous polyposis coli gene (APC) is a critical event in the development of colon cancer. For colon carcinogenesis, however, constitutive signaling through the canonical Wnt pathway is not a singular event. Here we review how canonical Wnt signaling is modulated by intracellular LEF/TCF composition and location, the action of different Wnt ligands, and the secretion of Wnt inhibitory molecules. We also review the contributions of non-canonical Wnt signaling and other distinct pathways in the tumor micro environment that cross-talk to the canonical Wnt pathway and thereby influence colon cancer progression. These 'non-APC' aspects of Wnt signaling are considered in relation to the development of potential agents for the treatment of patients with colon cancer. Regulatory pathways that influence Wnt signaling highlight how it might be possible to design therapies that target a network of signals beyond that of APC and β-catenin.
  25,500 206 41
Breaking the cycle: An insight into the role of ERα in eukaryotic cell cycles
Sonia Javan Moghadam, Amanda M Hanks, Khandan Keyomarsi
2011, 10:25 (30 November 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.90440  PMID:22190867
There have been numerous reviews written to date on estrogen receptor (ER), focusing on topics such as its role in the etiology of breast cancer, its mode of regulation, its role as a transcriptional activator and how to target it therapeutically, just to name a few. One reason for so much attention on this nuclear receptor is that it acts not only as a prognostic marker, but also as a target for therapy. However, a relatively undiscovered area in the literature regarding ER is how its activity in the presence and absence of ligand affects its role in proliferation and cell cycle transition. In this review, we provide a brief overview of ER signaling, ligand dependent and independent, genomic and non-genomic, and how these signaling events affect the role of ER in the mammalian cell cycle.
  23,572 673 4
Targeted therapies in development for non-small cell lung cancer
Thanyanan Reungwetwattana, Grace Kho Dy
2013, 12:22 (31 December 2013)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.123972  PMID:24574860
The iterative discovery in various malignancies during the past decades that a number of aberrant tumorigenic processes and signal transduction pathways are mediated by "druggable" protein kinases has led to a revolutionary change in drug development. In non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), the ErbB family of receptors (e.g., EGFR [epidermal growth factor receptor], HER2 [human epidermal growth factor receptor 2]), RAS (rat sarcoma gene), BRAF (v-raf murine sarcoma viral oncogene homolog B1), MAPK (mitogen-activated protein kinase) c-MET (c-mesenchymal-epithelial transition), FGFR (fibroblast growth factor receptor), DDR2 (discoidin domain receptor 2), PIK3CA (phosphatidylinositol-4,5-bisphosphate3-kinase, catalytic subunit alpha)), PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog), AKT (protein kinase B), ALK (anaplastic lym phoma kinase), RET (rearranged during transfection), ROS1 (reactive oxygen species 1) and EPH (erythropoietin-producing hepatoma) are key targets of various agents currently in clinical development. These oncogenic targets exert their selective growth advantage through various intercommunicating pathways, such as through RAS/RAF/MEK, phosphoinositide 3-kinase/AKT/mammalian target of rapamycin and SRC-signal transduction and transcription signaling. The recent clinical studies, EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors and crizotinib were considered as strongly effective targeted therapies in metastatic NSCLC. Currently, five molecular targeted agents were approved for treatment of advanced NSCLC: Gefitinib, erlotinib and afatinib for positive EGFR mutation, crizotinib for positive echinoderm microtubule-associated protein-like 4 (EML4)-ALK translocation and bevacizumab. Moreover, oncogenic mutant proteins are subject to regulation by protein trafficking pathways, specifically through the heat shock protein 90 system. Drug combinations affecting various nodes in these signaling and intracellular processes are predicted and demonstrated to be synergistic and advantageous in overcoming treatment resistance compared with monotherapy approaches. Understanding the role of the tumor microenvironment in the development and maintenance of the malignant phenotype provided additional therapeutic approaches as well. More recently, improved knowledge on tumor immunology has set the stage for promising immunotherapies in NSCLC. This review will focus on the rationale for the development of targeted therapies in NSCLC and the various strategies employed in preventing or overcoming the inevitable occurrence of treatment resistance.
  21,521 525 6
Shared signaling pathways in normal and breast cancer stem cells
Gautam K Malhotra, Xiangshan Zhao, Hamid Band, Vimla Band
2011, 10:38 (31 December 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.91413  PMID:22279423
Recent advances in our understanding of breast cancer biology have led to the identification of a subpopulation of cells within tumors that appear to be responsible for initiating and propagating the cancer. These tumor initiating cells are not only unique in their ability to generate tumors, but also share many similarities with elements of normal adult tissue stem cells, and have therefore been termed cancer stem cells (CSCs). These CSCs often inappropriately use many of the same signaling pathways utilized by their normal stem cell counterparts which may present a challenge to the development of CSC specific therapies. Here, we discuss three major stem cell signaling pathways (Notch, Wnt, and Hedgehog); with a focus on their function in normal mammary gland development and their misuse in breast cancer stem cell fate determination.
  20,063 1,237 10
Lung cancer biomarkers: State of the art
Sangeetha Subramaniam, Ram Krishna Thakur, Vinod Kumar Yadav, Ranjan Nanda, Shantanu Chowdhury, Anurag Agrawal
2013, 12:3 (28 February 2013)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.107958  PMID:23599685
Lung cancer is one of the deadliest cancers worldwide, with the highest incidence and mortality amongst all cancers. While the prognosis of lung cancer is generally grim, with 5-year survival rates of only 15%, there is hope, and evidence, that early detection of lung cancer can reduce mortality. Today, only computed tomography screening has shown to lead to early detection and reduction in mortality, but is limited by being anatomic in nature, unable to differentiate between inflammatory and neoplastic pathways, and therefore, susceptible to false positives. There is increasing interest in biomarkers for lung cancer, especially those that predict metastatic risk. Some biomarkers like DNA mutations and epigenetic changes potentially require tissue from the at-risk site; some like serum proteins and miRNAs are minimally invasive, but may not be specific to the lung. In comparison, emerging biomarkers from exhaled breath, like volatile organic compounds (VOC), and exhaled breath condensate, e.g., small molecules and nucleic acids, have the potential to combine the best of both. This mini review is intended to provide an overview of the field, briefly discussing the potential of what is known and highlighting the exciting recent developments, particularly with miRNAs and VOCs.
  19,360 1,372 8
Oncogenic activation of ERG: A predominant mechanism in prostate cancer
Taduru L Sreenath, Albert Dobi, Gyorgy Petrovics, Shiv Srivastava
2011, 10:37 (31 December 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.91122  PMID:22279422
Prevalent gene fusions involving regulatory sequences of the androgen receptor (AR) regulated genes (primarily TMPRSS2) and protein coding sequences of nuclear transcription factors of the ETS gene family (predominantly ERG) result in unscheduled androgen dependent ERG expression in prostate cancer (CaP).Cumulative data from a large number of studies in the past six years accentuate ERG alterations in more than half of all CaP patients in Western countries. Studies underscore that ERG functions are involved in the biology of CaP. ERG expression in normal context is selective to endothelial cells, specific hematopoetic cells and pre-cartilage cells. Normal functions of ERG are highlighted in hematopoetic stem cells. Emerging data continues to unravel molecular and cellular mechanisms by which ERG may contribute to CaP. Herein, we focus on biological and clinical aspects of ERG oncogenic alterations, potential of ERG-based stratification of CaP and the possibilities of targeting the ERG network in developing new therapeutic strategies for the disease.
  19,151 881 11
Mechanisms of Trastuzumab resistance in ErbB2-driven breast cancer and newer opportunities to overcome therapy resistance
Tameka A Bailey, Haitao Luan, Robert J Clubb, Mayumi Naramura, Vimla Band, Srikumar M Raja, Hamid Band
2011, 10:28 (30 November 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.90442  PMID:22190870
The Human Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor 2 (Her2, ErbB2 or Neu) is overexpressed in about 20 - 25% of breast cancers and is causally linked to oncogenesis, providing opportunities for targeted therapy. Trastuzumab (Herceptin™, Genentech Inc, San Francisco, CA), a humanized monoclonal antibody against ErbB2, is a successful example of this concept and has vastly improved the response to treatment and overall survival in a majority of ErbB2+ breast cancer patients. However, lack of response in some patients as well as relapse during the course of therapy in others, continue to challenge researchers and clinicians alike towards a better understanding of the fundamental mechanisms of Trastuzumab action and resistance to treatment. The exact in vivo mechanism of action of Trastuzumab remains enigmatic, given its direct effects on the ErbB2 signaling pathway as well as indirect contributions from the immune system, by virtue of the ability of Trastuzumab to elicit Antibody-Dependent Cellular Cytotoxicity. Consequently, multiple mechanisms of resistance have been proposed. We present here a comprehensive review of our current understanding of the mechanisms, both of Trastuzumab action and clinical resistance to Trastuzumab-based therapies. We also review newer strategies (based on ErbB2 receptor biology) that are being explored to overcome resistance to Trastuzumab therapy.
  19,014 951 12
Nicotine and lung cancer
Graham W Warren, Anurag K Singh
2013, 12:1 (31 January 2013)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.106680  PMID:23599683
Tobacco use in cancer patients is associated with increased cancer treatment failure and decreased survival. Nicotine is one of over 7,000 compounds in tobacco smoke and nicotine is the principal chemical associated with addiction. The purpose of this article is to review the tumor promoting activities of nicotine. Nicotine and its metabolites can promote tumor growth through increased proliferation, angiogenesis, migration, invasion, epithelial to mesenchymal transition, and stimulation of autocrine loops associated with tumor growth. Furthermore, nicotine can decrease the biologic effectiveness of conventional cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Common mechanisms appear to involve activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors and beta-adrenergic receptors leading to downstream activation of parallel signal transduction pathways that facilitate tumor progression and resistance to treatment. Data suggest that nicotine may be an important mechanism by which tobacco promotes tumor development, progression, and resistance to cancer treatment.
  18,941 661 13
Abstracts - Poster Presentations

2011, 10:15 (17 June 2011)
  18,982 522 -
Synergism of EGFR and c-Met pathways, cross-talk and inhibition, in non-small cell lung cancer
Neelu Puri, Ravi Salgia
2008, 7:9 (5 December 2008)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.44372  PMID:19240370
Background: c-Met and EGFR receptors are widely expressed on cancer cells; they are implicated in the development and progression of cancer through a plethora of effects on cell cycle progression, apoptosis, motility and metastasis and are potential targets for combination therapy. EGFR receptor tyrosine kinases are currently being targeted in a number of malignancies. Methods: Apoptosis was studied by FACS analysis using propidium iodide. EGF and HGF signaling intermediates were studied by western blotting. Cell proliferation was determined by MTT assays. Cell motility was done by time lapse confocal microscopy. Results: c-Met and EGFR were both expressed in A549, H1838, H2170, SW900, SW1573, H358, SKLU-1, and H1993 non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines. Both EGF and HGF at 100 ng/ml in medium showed a synergistic effect on cell proliferation at 48-72 h as seen by a proliferation assay in A549, H1838, and SKMES cells. In A549 and H1838 cell lines, HGF (40 ng/ml) and EGF (5 ng/ml) induced synergistic phosphorylation on c-Met (Tyr 1003/1230/1234/1235). Additionally, synergistic phosphorylation of Akt (Ser-473) and phospho-ERK1+ERK2 (Thr202/Tyr204) was also seen indicating that EGF and HGF could induce synergistic phosphorylation of important signaling intermediates. Treatment with EGF and HGF at 100 ng/ml for 2 h also leads to an additive effect in inducing cell motility (especially membrane ruffling) in H1993 cells. A novel c-Met small molecule tyrosine kinase inhibitor SU11274 and EGFR tyrosine kinase inhibitors Tyrphostin AG1478 and gefitinib (Iressa) were tested to study their effect in combination on proliferation and apoptosis in lung cancer cells. Interestingly, a synergistic effect on inhibition of cell proliferation was seen in the presence of SU11274 and Tyrphostin AG1478. 0.5 M Tyrphostin AG1478 and 2 M SU11274 inhibited growth by 21% and 25%, respectively; a combination of both tyrosine kinase inhibitors inhibited growth by 65%. Interestingly, EGFR inhibitor (gefitinib, Iressa) and c-Met inhibitor (SU11274) also had a synergistic effect on apoptosis in H358 cells. Conclusion: There was a synergistic effect of EGF and HGF on proliferation, downstream activation of signal transduction and an additive effect seen on motility. These studies show that a combination of HGF and EGF tyrosine kinase inhibitors on NSCLC, could potentially be targeted in a synergistic fashion.
  16,849 2,099 67
Cancer metabolism meets systems biology: Pyruvate kinase isoform PKM2 is a metabolic master regulator
Fabian V Filipp
2013, 12:14 (24 July 2013)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.115423  PMID:23961261
Pyruvate kinase activity is controlled by a tightly woven regulatory network. The oncofetal isoform of pyruvate kinase (PKM2) is a master regulator of cancer metabolism. PKM2 engages in parallel, feed-forward, positive and negative feedback control contributing to cancer progression. Besides its metabolic role, non-metabolic functions of PKM2 as protein kinase and transcriptional coactivator for c-MYC and hypoxia-inducible factor 1-alpha are essential for epidermal growth factor receptor activation-induced tumorigenesis. These biochemical activities are controlled by a shift in the oligomeric state of PKM2 that includes acetylation, oxidation, phosphorylation, prolyl hydroxylation and sumoylation. Metabolically active PKM2 tetramer is allosterically regulated and responds to nutritional and stress signals. Metabolically inactive PKM2 dimer is imported into the nucleus and can function as protein kinase stimulating transcription. A systems biology approach to PKM2 at the genome, transcriptome, proteome, metabolome and fluxome level reveals how differences in biomolecular structure translate into a global rewiring of cancer metabolism. Cancer systems biology takes us beyond the Warburg effect, opening unprecedented therapeutic opportunities.
  18,094 790 4
Pathogenesis of malignant pleural mesothelioma and the role of environmental and genetic factors
Shoshana J Weiner, Siyamek Neragi-Miandoab
2008, 7:3 (28 July 2008)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.42488  PMID:18662397
Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) is a rare, aggressive tumor for which no effective therapy exists despite the discovery of many possible molecular and genetic targets. Many risk factors for MPM development have been recognized including environmental exposures, genetic susceptibility, viral contamination, and radiation. However, the late stage of MPM diagnosis and the long latency that exists between some exposures and diagnosis have made it difficult to comprehensively evaluate the role of risk factors and their downstream molecular effects. In this review, we discuss the current molecular and genetic contributors in MPM pathogenesis and the risk factors associated with these carcinogenic processes.
  17,606 940 5
The two faces of Janus kinases and their respective STATs in mammary gland development and cancer
Kay-Uwe Wagner, Jeffrey W Schmidt
2011, 10:32 (8 December 2011)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.90677  PMID:22279417
Since its discovery as "just another kinase" more than twenty years ago, the family of JAK tyrosine kinases and their respective Signal Transducers and Activators of Transcription (STATs) has been a center of attention in the areas of signal transduction, development, and cancer. The subsequent designation of JAKs as Janus kinases after the mythical two-faced Roman God of the doorways accurately portrays the analogous and sometimes contrasting molecular and biological characteristics of these tyrosine kinases. The two "faces" of JAKs are their structurally similar kinase and pseudo-kinase domains. As essential parts of various transmembrane receptor complexes, these tyrosine kinases function at cellular gateways and relay signals from growth factors to their respective intracellular targets. The multifaceted nature of JAKs becomes evident from their ability to activate specific STATs during distinct phases of normal mammary gland development. Studies in breast cancer cells and genetically engineered mouse models also show that JAK/STAT signaling possesses a "two-faced" role during breast cancer initiation and progression. This review will highlight recent findings about important biological functions of JAKs and STATs during normal mammogenesis, with particular emphasis on the Jak2/Stat5 pathway as well as Jak1/2/Stat3 signaling complexes. In addition, we will discuss how the importance of these signaling networks changes during carcinogenesis. With JAK inhibitors currently under development to treat myeloproliferative disorders, determining the essential functions of JAKs at particular stages of disease initiation and progression is of critical importance to predict the efficacy of these agents for targeted therapies against breast cancer.
  17,402 820 8
Cancer review: Cholangiocarcinoma
Yezaz Ahmed Ghouri, Idrees Mian, Boris Blechacz
2015, 14:1 (23 February 2015)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.151940  PMID:25788866
Cholangiocarcinoma (CCA) is the most common biliary tract malignancy. CCA is classified as intrahepatic, perihilar or distal extrahepatic; the individual subtypes differ in their biologic behavior, clinical presentation, and management. Throughout the last decades, CCA incidence rates had significantly increased. In addition to known established risk factors, novel possible risk factors (i.e. obesity, hepatitis C virus) have been identified that are of high importance in developed countries where CCA prevalence rates have been low. CCA tends to develop on the background of inflammation and cholestasis. In recent years, our understanding of the molecular mechanisms of cholangiocarcinogenesis has increased, thereby, providing the basis for molecularly targeted therapies. In its diagnostic evaluation, imaging techniques have improved, and the role of complementary techniques has been defined. There is a need for improved CCA biomarkers as currently used ones are suboptimal. Multiple staging systems have been developed, but none of these is optimal. The prognosis of CCA is considered dismal. However, treatment options have improved throughout the last two decades for carefully selected subgroups of CCA patients. Perihilar CCA can now be treated with orthotopic liver transplantation with neoadjuvant chemoradiation achieving 5-year survival rates of 68%. Classically considered chemotherapy-resistant, the ABC-02 trial has shown the therapeutic benefit of combination therapy with gemcitabine and cisplatin. The benefits of adjuvant treatments for resectable CCA, local ablative therapies and molecularly targeted therapies still need to be defined. In this article, we will provide the reader with an overview over CCA, and discuss the latest developments and controversies.
  17,415 34 -
Melanoma: Stem cells, sun exposure and hallmarks for carcinogenesis, molecular concepts and future clinical implications
Athanassios Kyrgidis, Thrasivoulos-George Tzellos, Stefanos Triaridis
2010, 9:3 (1 April 2010)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.62141  PMID:20442802
Background :The classification and prognostic assessment of melanoma is currently based on morphologic and histopathologic biomarkers. Availability of an increasing number of molecular biomarkers provides the potential for redefining diagnostic and prognostic categories and utilizing pharmacogenomics for the treatment of patients. The aim of the present review is to provide a basis that will allow the construction-or reconstruction-of future melanoma research. Methods: We critically review the common medical databases (PubMed, EMBASE, Scopus and Cochrane CENTRAL) for studies reporting on molecular biomarkers for melanoma. Results are discussed along the hallmarks proposed for malignant transformation by Hanahan and Weinberg. We further discuss the genetic basis of melanoma with regard to the possible stem cell origin of melanoma cells and the role of sunlight in melanoma carcinogenesis. Results: Melanocyte precursors undergo several genome changes -UV-induced or not- which could be either mutations or epigenetic. These changes provide stem cells with abilities to self-invoke growth signals, to suppress anti-growth signals, to avoid apoptosis, to replicate without limit, to invade, proliferate and sustain angiogenesis. Melanocyte stem cells are able to progressively collect these changes in their genome. These new potential functions, drive melanocyte precursors to the epidermis were they proliferate and might cause benign nevi. In the epidermis, they are still capable of acquiring new traits via changes to their genome. With time, such changes could add up to transform a melanocyte precursor to a malignant melanoma stem cell. Conclusions : Melanoma cannot be considered a "black box" for researchers anymore. Current trends in the diagnosis and prognosis of melanoma are to individualize treatment based on molecular biomarkers. Pharmacogenomics constitute a promising field with regard to melanoma patients' treatment. Finally, development of novel monoclonal antibodies is expected to complement melanoma patient care while a number of investigational vaccines could find their way into everyday oncology practice.
  15,593 1,374 24
MicroRNAs and lung cancer: Biology and applications in diagnosis and prognosis
Reema Mallick, Santosh Kumar Patnaik, Sai Yendamuri
2010, 9:8 (3 August 2010)
DOI:10.4103/1477-3163.67074  PMID:20808843
MicroRNAs are tiny non-coding RNA molecules which play important roles in the epigenetic control of cellular processes by preventing the translation of proteins from messenger RNAs (mRNAs). A single microRNA can target different mRNAs, and an mRNA can be targeted by multiple microRNAs. Such complex interplays underlie many molecular pathways in cells, and specific roles for many microRNAs in physiological as well as pathological phenomena have been identified. Changes in expression of microRNAs have been associated with a wide variety of disease conditions, and microRNA-based biomarkers are being developed for the identification and monitoring of such states. This review provides a general overview of the current state of knowledge about the biology of microRNAs, and specific information about microRNAs with regard to the diagnosis and prognosis of lung cancer.
  15,235 1,641 15
Does architectural lighting contribute to breast cancer?
Mariana G Figueiro, Mark S Rea, John D Bullough
2006, 5:20 (10 August 2006)
DOI:10.1186/1477-3163-5-20  PMID:16901343
Objectives: There is a growing interest in the role that light plays on nocturnal melatonin production and, perhaps thereby, the incidence of breast cancer in modern societies. The direct causal relationships in this logical chain have not, however, been fully established and the weakest link is an inability to quantitatively specify architectural lighting as a stimulus for the circadian system. The purpose of the present paper is to draw attention to this weakness. Data Sources and Extraction: We reviewed the literature on the relationship between melatonin, light at night, and cancer risk in humans and tumor growth in animals. More specifically, we focused on the impact of light on nocturnal melatonin suppression in humans and on the applicability of these data to women in real-life situations. Photometric measurement data from the lighted environment of women at work and at home is also reported. Data Synthesis: The literature review and measurement data demonstrate that more quantitative knowledge is needed about circadian light exposures actually experienced by women and girls in modern societies. Conclusion: Without such quantitative knowledge, limited insights can be gained about the causal relationship between melatonin and the etiology of breast cancer from epidemiological studies and from parametric studies using animal models.
  14,797 1,240 22