Three academic teams have independently
developed techniques for in
vivo detection of cancer stem cells in mouse
solid tumors.1-3 The methods could be useful as next-generation
target discovery platforms and as screens for compounds that hit cancer stem
Of mice and CSCs
The lineage-tracing methods used in the
three papers "give very strong support to the cancer stem cell concept and
are notable for avoiding the limitations of the transplantation methods, which
gave rise to skepticism about the existence of cancer stem cells in solid
cancers," said Max Wicha, who published the 2003 paper that first used the
transplantation method to identify breast CSCs.
The corresponding authors on the papers
told SciBX they have ideas about how to use the lineage-tracing
methods in both the target discovery and compound screening setting.
Lineage tracing and xenograft models
could potentially be combined into a single screening platform for CSCs, said
Fulmer, T. SciBX 5(32);
Published online Aug. 16, 2012
1. Chen, J. et al. Nature; published online Aug. 1, 2012;
Contact: Luis F. Parada, The University of Texas Southwestern Medical
Center, Dallas, Texas
2. Driessens, G. et al. Nature; published online Aug. 1, 2012;
Contact: Benjamin Simons, University of Cambridge, Cambridge,
Contact: Cédric Blanpain, Free University of Brussels, Brussels, Belgium
3. Schepers, A.G. et al. Science; published online Aug. 1, 2012;
Contact: Hans Clevers, Hubrecht Institute, Utrecht, the
4. Al-Hajj, M. et al. Proc. Natl.
Acad. Sci. USA 100, 3983-3988 (2003)
5. Nguyen, L.V. et al. Nat. Rev.
Cancer 12, 133-143 (2012)
6. Clevers, H. Nat. Med. 17, 313-319 (2011)
7. Magee, J.A. et al. Cancer Cell 21, 283-296 (2012)
S.J. et al. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 109, 2784-2789 (2012)
al. Nat. Biotechnol. 27, 91-97 (2009)
10. Sachlos, E. et al. Cell 149, 1284-1297
11. Mani, S.A. et al. Cell 133, 704-715 (2008)
12. Gupta, P.B. et al. Cell 138, 645-659 (2009)
Actium Research Inc., Toronto, Ontario, Canada
American Association for Cancer Research, Philadelphia, Pa.
Eclipse Therapeutics Inc., San Diego, Calif.
Free University of Brussels, Brussels, Belgium
Hubrecht Institute, Utrecht, the Netherlands
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Mass.
McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
OncoMed Pharmaceuticals Inc., Redwood City, Calif.
Stem Cell and
Cancer Research Institute at McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
University of Cambridge, Cambridge, U.K.
University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, Ann Arbor, Mich.
University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Mich.
The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas
Verastem Inc. (NASDAQ:VSTM), Cambridge, Mass.
Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research, Cambridge, Mass.