Navigation Links
In search of cancer's common ground: A next-generation view

Researchers have synthesized the vast literature on cancer to produce a next-generation view of the features that are shared amongst all cancer cells. These hallmarks of the disease provide a comprehensive and cohesive foundation for the field that will influence biomedical researchers in their quest for new cancer treatments.

The review article by Douglas Hanahan of cole Polytechnique Fdrale in Switzerland and Robert Weinberg of the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research appears in the March 4th issue of Cell, a Cell Press publication. The new article updates and expands on the authors' classic review, "Hallmarks of Cancer," the most cited Cell article of all time.

"To our knowledge there has been no such synthesis for another disease," Hanahan said. "What was special for cancer was the explosion of knowledge, daunting in its scope and detail, but sufficient in terms of mechanistic pieces of a puzzle, to allow such a formulation."

"Cancer is special because it is, conservatively, more than 100 distinct diseases," Weinberg added. "The question is whether one can find commonalities shared by this motley crew."

The approach, as Hanahan and Weinberg explain it, was to stand back and attempt to produce some overarching conceptual scaffold, imposing some order on the vast and seeming unmanageable flood of observations and conceptual models that had poured out of the cancer field since the discovery of the first oncogene in the 1970s. The original "hallmarks" or functional abilities that characterize cancer include: 1) self-sufficiency in growth signals, 2) insensitivity to anti-growth signals, 3) tissue invasion and metastasis, 4) limitless replicative potential, 5) sustained blood vessel growth (angiogenesis), and 6) resistance to cell death.

As the new work details, much has been revealed in the last decade about the molecular and genetic underpinnings of these six original hallmarks. The authors also introduce two enabling hallmarks -- genomic instability and inflammation and two emerging hallmarks evasion of the immune system and reprogrammed energy metabolism.

Enabling characteristics set the stage for cancer, Hanahan explained. Genomic instability results in rare mutations that contribute to the regulation or functional mechanics of cancer's acquired capabilities. Inflammation of tumors mistaken for wounds by the immune system brings in wound-healing cells that inadvertently encourage proliferation, angiogenesis, and invasion.

Emerging hallmarks, on the other hand, are features that are beginning to appear as though they may be core features in nearly all cancers based on recent evidence. "While not yet clearly documented to be widespread or ubiquitous in cancers, they may well become so over the coming years," Weinberg said.

Understanding these principles has implications for cancer treatment.

"Drugs targeting each discrete hallmark or enabling characteristic are either clinically approved or are in clinical development, but virtually all show limited benefit due to the development of resistance," Hanahan said. "We pose the reasonable - but far from certain - hypothesis, that by co-targeting multiple hallmarks, drug resistance may be more difficult for a cancer to achieve, thereby producing more enduring clinical benefits for cancer patients."

Ultimately, though, it all comes down to one simple notion: "As before, we believe that there is much to be gained from stepping back and understanding the basic principles of cancer biology rather than burrowing deeply into its myriad details," Weinberg said.


Contact: Elisabeth (Lisa) Lyons
Cell Press

Related medicine news :

1. Embedded Mobile & M2M Device revenues to Rise to Almost $19 Billion Globally by 2014, Says Juniper Research
2. 2010 HSR Impact Award recognizes surgical safety research
3. MSU launches first anti-counterfeiting research program
4. Researchers map all the fragile sites of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiaes genome
5. UH Case Medical Center researchers publish promising findings for advanced cervical cancer
6. Researchers discover new way to kill pediatric brain tumors
7. Family Research Council: Planned Parenthood Report Oversexualizes Ten-Year-Olds, Undermines Parental Authority
8. Michael J. Fox Foundation Awards $1 Million to Drive Critical New Research Tools and Technologies in Parkinsons Drug Development
9. Luth Researchs IndicatorEDG(TM) Study Finds Americans Hopes of Achieving Their Dreams Are Fading
10. International Diabetes Federation awards $2 million to 9 global diabetes research projects
11. Nationwide Video Search Kicks off Ban Asbestos Campaign
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... "FCPX editors can now ... of Final Cut Pro X," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. ... Final Cut Pro X users can now reveal the media of their split ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... 27, 2016 , ... A revolution is underway. Brooklyn-based ... experience for the millions of people who require these medical transport services annually. ... through the use of technology. Now, SmartEMS has put forth an industry-changing app ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... , ... June 26, 2016 , ... On June 10-11, ... of the 2016 Cereal Festival and World’s Longest Breakfast Table in Battle Creek, MI, ... the city’s history as home to some of the world’s leading providers of cereal ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... June 26, 2016 , ... Brent Kasmer, a legally blind and certified personal trainer ... through a fitness app. The fitness app plans to fix the two major problems leading ... a one size fits all type program , They don’t eliminate all the ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... , ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery services, can now turn to Dr. ... Russell Peckham for medical and surgical dermatology. , Dr. Dorsey brings specialization to include ... in Mohs Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey was under the direction of Glenn ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... Mass. , June 24, 2016   Pulmatrix, ... pharmaceutical company developing innovative inhaled drugs, announced today that ... Russell Investments reconstituted its comprehensive set of ... "This is an important milestone for Pulmatrix," ... will increase shareholder awareness of our progress in developing ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Calif. , June 23, 2016 Any dentist ... many challenges of the current process. Many of them do ... of the technical difficulties and high laboratory costs involved. And ... to offer it at such a high cost that the ... it. Dr. Parsa Zadeh , founder of ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ANGELES , June 23, 2016 ... CAPR ), a biotechnology company focused ... therapeutics, today announced that patient enrollment in its ... in Duchenne) has exceeded 50% of its 24-patient ... enrollment in the third quarter of 2016, and ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: