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Embryonic stem cell markers expression in cancers.

Abstract : The transcription factors Oct4 and Sox2 are highly expressed in embryonic stem (ES) cells. In conjunction with Klf4 and c-Myc, their over-expression can induce pluripotency in both mouse and human somatic cells, indicating that these factors are key regulators of the signaling network necessary for ES cell pluripotency. Self-renewal is a hallmark of stem cells and cancer and stemness program could play an important role in cancer. Therefore we compared the expression of Oct4, Sox2, Klf4 and c-Myc in 40 human tumor types to that of their normal tissue counterparts using publicly available gene expression data, including the Oncomine Cancer Microarray database. We found significant overexpression of at least 1/4 pluripotency factors Oct4, Sox2, Klf4 or c-Myc in 18 out of the 40 cancer types investigated. Furthermore, within a given tumor category these genes are associated with tumor progression or bad prognosis. A key goal in cancer research is to identify the mechanism by which cancer stem cells arise and self-renew. The overexpression of Oct3/4, Sox2, Klf4 and/or c-Myc could contribute to the pathologic self-renewal characteristics of cancer stem cells.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, March 10, 2009 - 11:35:40 AM
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Matthieu Schoenhals, Alboukadel Kassambara, John De Vos, Dirk Hose, Jérôme Moreaux, et al.. Embryonic stem cell markers expression in cancers.. Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Elsevier, 2009, 383, pp.157-162. ⟨10.1016/j.bbrc.2009.02.156⟩. ⟨inserm-00367054⟩