A number of solid tumours contains a distinct subpopulation of cells, termed cancer stem cells(CSCs) which represent the source for tissue renewal and hold malignant potential and whichwould be responsible of therapy resistance. Today, the winning goal in cancer research wouldbe to find drugs to kill both cancer cell and cancer stem cells, while sparing normal cells.Osteosarcoma is an aggressive pediatric tumor of growing bones that, despite surgery andchemotherapy, is prone to relapse. We have recently selected from human osteosarcomaMG63 cells a cancer stem-like cell line (3AB-OS), which has unlimited proliferative potential,high levels of stemness-related markers, and in vivo tumor-forming capacity in xenograftassays. Here, we have shown that 3AB-OS cells can differentiate in vitro into endoderm-,mesoderm- and ectoderm-derived lineages. Cell differentiation is morphological, molecularand functional. We propose that this model system of 3AB-OS differentiation in vitro mighthave a number of useful purposes, among which the study of molecular mechanisms ofosteosarcoma origin, and the analysis of factors involved in specification of the various celllineages. We still do not know either what are the shared and distinguishing charactersbetween CSCs and normal stem cells, or what is the reason why the cancer stem cells, like thenormal stem cells, have the ability to differentiate toward the derivatives of the primary germlayers. It is possible that each of the differentiation capability may be exploited by CSCs tosupply their needs of growing and surviving in hostile microenvironment.
|Numero di pagine||14|
|Rivista||STEM CELL DISCOVERY|
|Stato di pubblicazione||Published - 2013|