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      Evolving Therapeutic Strategies to Exploit Chromosome Instability in Cancer

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          Cancer is a devastating disease that claims over 8 million lives each year. Understanding the molecular etiology of the disease is critical to identify and develop new therapeutic strategies and targets. Chromosome instability (CIN) is an abnormal phenotype, characterized by progressive numerical and/or structural chromosomal changes, which is observed in virtually all cancer types. CIN generates intratumoral heterogeneity, drives cancer development, and promotes metastatic progression, and thus, it is associated with highly aggressive, drug-resistant tumors and poor patient prognosis. As CIN is observed in both primary and metastatic lesions, innovative strategies that exploit CIN may offer therapeutic benefits and better outcomes for cancer patients. Unfortunately, exploiting CIN remains a significant challenge, as the aberrant mechanisms driving CIN and their causative roles in cancer have yet to be fully elucidated. The development and utilization of CIN-exploiting therapies is further complicated by the associated risks for off-target effects and secondary cancers. Accordingly, this review will assess the strengths and limitations of current CIN-exploiting therapies, and discuss emerging strategies designed to overcome these challenges to improve outcomes and survival for patients diagnosed with cancer.

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          Hallmarks of Cancer: The Next Generation

          The hallmarks of cancer comprise six biological capabilities acquired during the multistep development of human tumors. The hallmarks constitute an organizing principle for rationalizing the complexities of neoplastic disease. They include sustaining proliferative signaling, evading growth suppressors, resisting cell death, enabling replicative immortality, inducing angiogenesis, and activating invasion and metastasis. Underlying these hallmarks are genome instability, which generates the genetic diversity that expedites their acquisition, and inflammation, which fosters multiple hallmark functions. Conceptual progress in the last decade has added two emerging hallmarks of potential generality to this list-reprogramming of energy metabolism and evading immune destruction. In addition to cancer cells, tumors exhibit another dimension of complexity: they contain a repertoire of recruited, ostensibly normal cells that contribute to the acquisition of hallmark traits by creating the "tumor microenvironment." Recognition of the widespread applicability of these concepts will increasingly affect the development of new means to treat human cancer. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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            Cancer incidence and mortality worldwide: sources, methods and major patterns in GLOBOCAN 2012.

            Estimates of the worldwide incidence and mortality from 27 major cancers and for all cancers combined for 2012 are now available in the GLOBOCAN series of the International Agency for Research on Cancer. We review the sources and methods used in compiling the national cancer incidence and mortality estimates, and briefly describe the key results by cancer site and in 20 large "areas" of the world. Overall, there were 14.1 million new cases and 8.2 million deaths in 2012. The most commonly diagnosed cancers were lung (1.82 million), breast (1.67 million), and colorectal (1.36 million); the most common causes of cancer death were lung cancer (1.6 million deaths), liver cancer (745,000 deaths), and stomach cancer (723,000 deaths). © 2014 UICC.
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              Cancer genome landscapes.

              Over the past decade, comprehensive sequencing efforts have revealed the genomic landscapes of common forms of human cancer. For most cancer types, this landscape consists of a small number of "mountains" (genes altered in a high percentage of tumors) and a much larger number of "hills" (genes altered infrequently). To date, these studies have revealed ~140 genes that, when altered by intragenic mutations, can promote or "drive" tumorigenesis. A typical tumor contains two to eight of these "driver gene" mutations; the remaining mutations are passengers that confer no selective growth advantage. Driver genes can be classified into 12 signaling pathways that regulate three core cellular processes: cell fate, cell survival, and genome maintenance. A better understanding of these pathways is one of the most pressing needs in basic cancer research. Even now, however, our knowledge of cancer genomes is sufficient to guide the development of more effective approaches for reducing cancer morbidity and mortality.

                Author and article information

                Cancers (Basel)
                Cancers (Basel)
                01 November 2017
                November 2017
                : 9
                : 11
                [1 ]Department of Biochemistry & Medical Genetics, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2, Canada; laura.thompson@ (L.L.T.); jeussetl@ (L.M-P.J.); lepagec@ (C.C.L.)
                [2 ]Research Institute in Oncology and Hematology, CancerCare Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3E 0V9, Canada
                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence: Kirk.McManus@ ; Tel.: +1-204-787-2833
                © 2017 by the authors.

                Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (



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