This must mean that some cancer cells can use alternative mechanisms which are not affected by current treatments. In this way, they evade therapy and regenerate the tumor, leading to recurrence.
The lab of Andreas Androutsellis-Theotokis at the Department of Internal Medicine III (MK3) at the Technische Universität Dresden, in Germany had previously discovered a new molecular mechanism that regulates regeneration of various tissues after injury. They named it "The STAT3-Ser/Hes3 Signaling Axis," after two of its key components and they demonstrated that it is very important in activating stem cells that live within our tissues so that they may help the tissue regenerate in models of Parkinson's disease, ischemic stroke, multiple sclerosis, and types 1 and 2 diabetes. They posited that the same mechanism could be hijacked by some cancer cells (perhaps the elusive cancer stem cells) as a means of evading current therapies and regenerating the tumor.
Research - Fellow - Steve - Poser - Colleagues
Research Fellow Steve Poser and colleagues set to test the idea using cells from multiple patients with aggressive brain cancer. They demonstrated that, indeed, these cells can switch over from using the more established molecular mechanisms to using this new mechanism.
Depending on which mechanism they were using, they were vulnerable to different treatments. The team established an international and interdisciplinary collaborative project to characterize this new cancer cell state in terms of what genes are turned on and off, what mechanical properties are affected (these are important in metastasis because...
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