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Targeting Wnt signaling for the treatment of gastric cancer

Koushyar, Sarah, Powell, Arfon G., Vincan, Elizabeth and Phesse, Toby J. 2020. Targeting Wnt signaling for the treatment of gastric cancer. International Journal of Molecular Sciences 21 (11) , 3927. 10.3390/ijms21113927

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The Wnt signaling pathway is evolutionarily conserved, regulating both embryonic development and maintaining adult tissue homeostasis. Wnt signaling controls several fundamental cell functions, including proliferation, differentiation, migration, and stemness. It therefore plays an important role in the epithelial homeostasis and regeneration of the gastrointestinal tract. Often, both hypo- or hyper-activation of the pathway due to genetic, epigenetic, or receptor/ligand alterations are seen in many solid cancers, such as breast, colorectal, gastric, and prostate. Gastric cancer (GC) is the fourth commonest cause of cancer worldwide and is the second leading cause of cancer-related death annually. Although the number of new diagnoses has declined over recent decades, prognosis remains poor, with only 15% surviving to five years. Geographical differences in clinicopathological features are also apparent, with epidemiological and genetic studies revealing GC to be a highly heterogeneous disease with phenotypic diversity as a result of etiological factors. The molecular heterogeneity associated with GC dictates that a single ‘one size fits all’ approach to management is unlikely to be successful. Wnt pathway dysregulation has been observed in approximately 50% of GC tumors and may offer a novel therapeutic target for patients who would otherwise have a poor outcome. This mini review will highlight some recent discoveries involving Wnt signaling in GC.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
European Cancer Stem Cell Research Institute (ECSCRI)
Publisher: MDPI
ISSN: 1661-6596
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 1 June 2020
Date of Acceptance: 28 May 2020
Last Modified: 07 Jan 2022 02:14

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