Event Title

Overview of Breast Cancer Stem Cell Methods

Advisor(s)

Dr. Jonna Frasor; University of Illinois at Chicago

Discipline

Biology

Start Date

21-4-2021 10:25 AM

End Date

21-4-2021 10:40 AM

Abstract

Out of all breast cancer (BC) cases, approximately 70% are estrogen-receptor-positive (ER+) which means that estrogen receptor (ER) is present in tumors and drives proliferation. As ER+ BC is reliant on ER for growth, development, and survival, targeting ER with drugs like tamoxifen suppresses its activity and reduces tumor growth. However, approximately 40% of women relapse. BC stem cells (BCSCs) are thought to be the reason behind these deadly relapses. These cells have the ability to survive therapy and contribute to the recurrence of more aggressive and resistant tumors as a result. Therefore, understanding and targeting BCSCs is fundamental to the treatment of patients who might relapse. There is a variety of assays used to characterize BCSC properties in tumors. The aim of this paper is to examine three such methods: the mammosphere assay, fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS) for common stem cell markers, and limiting dilution assay. Each of these identifies a different subpopulation of BCSCs, and the advantages and disadvantages of each method will be discussed.

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Apr 21st, 10:25 AM Apr 21st, 10:40 AM

Overview of Breast Cancer Stem Cell Methods

Out of all breast cancer (BC) cases, approximately 70% are estrogen-receptor-positive (ER+) which means that estrogen receptor (ER) is present in tumors and drives proliferation. As ER+ BC is reliant on ER for growth, development, and survival, targeting ER with drugs like tamoxifen suppresses its activity and reduces tumor growth. However, approximately 40% of women relapse. BC stem cells (BCSCs) are thought to be the reason behind these deadly relapses. These cells have the ability to survive therapy and contribute to the recurrence of more aggressive and resistant tumors as a result. Therefore, understanding and targeting BCSCs is fundamental to the treatment of patients who might relapse. There is a variety of assays used to characterize BCSC properties in tumors. The aim of this paper is to examine three such methods: the mammosphere assay, fluorescence activated cell sorting (FACS) for common stem cell markers, and limiting dilution assay. Each of these identifies a different subpopulation of BCSCs, and the advantages and disadvantages of each method will be discussed.