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01.12.2018 | Review | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

Clinical and Translational Medicine 1/2018

Cytokines, breast cancer stem cells (BCSCs) and chemoresistance

Clinical and Translational Medicine > Ausgabe 1/2018
Weilong Chen, Yuanyuan Qin, Suling Liu


Chemotherapy resistance of breast cancer poses a great challenge to the survival of patients. During breast cancer treatment, the development of intrinsic and acquired drug resistance tends to further induce adverse prognosis, such as metastasis. In recent years, the progress of research on cytokine-modulated tumor microenvironment and breast cancer stem cells (BCSCs) has shed light on defining the mechanisms of drug resistance gradually. In this review, we have discussed cytokine regulation on breast cancer chemoresistance. Cytokines can affect tumor cell behavior or reprogram tumor niche through specific signaling pathways, thereby regulating the progress of drug resistance. In addition, we summarized the mutually regulatory networks between cytokines and BCSCs in mediating chemoresistance. Cytokines in the tumor microenvironment can regulate the self-renewal and survival of BCSCs in a variety of ways, sequentially promoting chemotherapeutic resistance. Therefore, the combinational treatment of BCSC targeting and cytokine blockade may have a positive effect on the clinical treatment of breast cancer.
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