The history of the stem cell field offers pointers for future research on cancer stem cells.The full text is publicly accessible. Excerpts:
Since the beginning of the era inaugurated by the great experimental pathologists, microscopic examination has revealed that many tumors, be they liquid or solid, exhibit morphologic heterogeneity. Tumors are also heterogeneous functionally, as demonstrated most dramatically by studies in which murine or human tumors were re-transplanted into syngeneic or xenogeneic immune-compromised recipients. Remarkably, such experiments have also included human autotransplants. The collective conclusion from these studies was that tumor re-initiation is variable and often rare, requiring 103 to 107 cells.
Ultimately, the relevance of the CSC model will be determined by clinical data.See also:
The CSC hypothesis: recalling some history (December 30, 2008).
Tumorigenic cells not rare in human melanoma (December 3, 2008).