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Stamceller i oral cancer

ABSTRACT

Oversigtsartikel Dato: 30.04.2015

Oral cancer forekommer hos 7-8 pr. 100.000 indbyggere pr. år i Danmark. Femårs overlevelsesraten er gennemsnitligt på 50 % og afhænger af tumorens størrelse. For at finde nye behandlingstyper forskes der bl.a. i cancerstamcellers forekomst, egenskaber og virkningsmekanismer, da disse celler menes at have afgørende betydning for canceren. Cancer er ukontrolleret cellevækst af malign karakter. 90 % af alle cancere er karcinomer, som opstår fra sunde epitelceller. Hos voksne kan der i sundt væv findes såkaldte voksne stamceller, som via deres særlige delingsmønster er med til at forny og opretholde vævet. I cancere kan findes cancerstamceller, der har lignende egenskaber som de almindelige stamceller, og man formoder, at cancerstamcellerne opstår fra deres raske ækvivalent. Det gør det svært at skelne cancerstamceller fra almindelige stamceller ved undersøgelser. Man forsøger at finde kombinationer af markører, der er unikke for cancerstamceller, i håb om at kunne isolere dem og målrette behandling mod dem. I forbindelse med cancerens evne til metastasering forskes der bl.a. i cancerstamcellernes evne til epitelialmesenkymal transition (EMT), en proces hvor cellen skifter fænotype. Kendskab til forekomst og funktion af stamceller i maligne tumorer er vigtigt for cancerbehandling. Cancerstamcellernes tilstedeværelse komplicerer de nuværende behandlingsformer, og derfor vil behandling rettet mod dem muligvis vise bedre resultater.

Stem cells in oral cancer: Oral cancer occurs in 7-8 per 100,000 inhabitants per year in Denmark. The average 5-year survival rate is 50 % and depends on the size of the tumour. In order to find new treatments there is research in the field of cancer stem cells, their occurrence, properties and mechanisms of action, as these cells are thought to be critical to cancer. Cancer is malignant and uncontrolled cell growth. 90 % of all cancers are carcinomas arising from healthy epithelial cells. In adults, stem cells are found in healthy tissues where their specific cell dividing pattern renews and maintains the tissue. In cancers, cancer stem cells are found to have similar characteristics to the normal stem cells, and it is suspected that cancer stem cells derive from their healthy equivalent. This makes it difficult to distinguish cancer stem cells from normal stem cells. Researchers are trying to find combinations of markers that are unique to cancer stem cells, hoping to isolate and target treatment against them. In the context of cancer metastasis there is research in cancer stem cells' ability to perform epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), a process wherein the cell changes phenotype. Knowledge of the presence and function of stem cells in malignant tumours is essential for cancer treatment. Cancer stem cell presence complicates the current therapies and therefore treatment directed at them may show better results.