Ovarian cancer stem cells identified, characterized

Apr 17, 2008

Researchers at Yale School of Medicine have identified, characterized and cloned ovarian cancer stem cells and have shown that these stem cells may be the source of ovarian cancer’s recurrence and its resistance to chemotherapy.

“These results bring us closer to more effective and targeted treatment for epithelial ovarian cancer, one of the most lethal forms of cancer,” said Gil Mor, M.D., associate professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences at Yale School of Medicine.

Mor presented his findings recently at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Meeting in San Diego, California.

Cancerous tumors are made up of cells that are both cancerous and non-cancerous. Within cancerous cells, there is a further subclass referred to as cancer stem cells, which can replicate indefinitely.

“Present chemotherapy modalities eliminate the bulk of the tumor cells, but cannot eliminate a core of these cancer stem cells that have a high capacity for renewal,” said Mor, who is also a member of the Yale Cancer Center. “Identification of these cells, as we have done here, is the first step in the development of therapeutic modalities.”

Mor and colleagues isolated cells from 80 human samples of either peritoneal fluid or solid tumors. The cancer stem cells that were identified were positive for traditional cancer stem cell markers including CD44 and MyD88. These cells also showed a high capacity for repair and self-renewal.

The isolated cells formed tumors 100 percent of the time. Within those tumors, 10 percent of the cells were positive for cancer stem cell marker CD44, while 90 percent were CD44 negative.

Mor and his team were able to isolate and clone the ovarian cancer stem cells. They found that these cells were highly resistant to conventional chemotherapy while the non-cancer stem cells responded to treatment. “Isolating and cloning these cells will lead to development of new treatments to target and eliminate the cancer stem cells and hopefully prevent recurrence,” said Mor.

Source: Yale University

Explore further: Phase 3 study may be game-changer for acute myeloid leukemia

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New patenting guidelines are needed for biotechnology

Apr 22, 2014

Biotechnology scientists must be aware of the broad patent landscape and push for new patent and licensing guidelines, according to a new paper from Rice University's Baker Institute for Public Policy.

Analyzing living cells quickly and accurately

Apr 02, 2014

In order to investigate inflammation, tumors or stem cells, medical practitioners analyze living cells. Non-invasive optical procedures such as Raman spectroscopy accelerate this procedure. Researchers have ...

Recommended for you

Phase 3 study may be game-changer for acute myeloid leukemia

1 hour ago

Moffitt Cancer Center researchers say clinical trials for a new experimental drug to treat acute myeloid leukemia (AML) are very promising. Patients treated with CPX-351, a combination of the chemotherapeutic drugs cytarabine ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Rising role seen for health education specialists

(HealthDay)—A health education specialist can help family practices implement quality improvement projects with limited additional financial resources, according to an article published in the March/April ...

FDA proposes first regulations for e-cigarettes

The federal government wants to prohibit sales of electronic cigarettes to minors and require approval for new products and health warning labels under regulations being proposed by the Food and Drug Administration.

When things get glassy, molecules go fractal

Colorful church windows, beads on a necklace and many of our favorite plastics share something in common—they all belong to a state of matter known as glasses. School children learn the difference between ...

FCC to propose pay-for-priority Internet standards

The Federal Communications Commission is set to propose new open Internet rules that would allow content companies to pay for faster delivery over the so-called "last mile" connection to people's homes.

SK Hynix posts Q1 surge in net profit

South Korea's SK Hynix Inc said Thursday its first-quarter net profit surged nearly 350 percent from the previous year on a spike in sales of PC memory chips.

Brazil enacts Internet 'Bill of Rights'

Brazil's president signed into law on Wednesday a "Bill of Rights" for the digital age that aims to protect online privacy and promote the Internet as a public utility by barring telecommunications companies ...