Latest News on Cancer Metastasis : Aug – 2020

Autophagy in cancer metastasis

Autophagy is a highly conserved self-degradative process that has a key role in cellular stress responses and survival. Recent work has begun to explore the function of autophagy in cancer metastasis, which is of particular interest given the dearth of effective therapeutic options for metastatic disease. Autophagy is induced upon progression of various human cancers to metastasis and together with data from genetically engineered mice and experimental metastasis models, a role for autophagy at nearly every phase of the metastatic cascade has been identified. Specifically, autophagy has been shown to be involved in modulating tumor cell motility and invasion, cancer stem cell viability and differentiation, resistance to anoikis, epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, tumor cell dormancy and escape from immune surveillance, with emerging functions in establishing the pre-metastatic niche and other aspects of metastasis. In this review, we provide a general overview of how autophagy modulates cancer metastasis and discuss the significance of new findings for disease management. [1]

Lymphatic function, lymphangiogenesis, and cancer metastasis

The lymphatic system serves as the primary route for the metastasis of many cancers and the extent of lymph node involvement is the most important indicator of tumor aggressiveness. Despite the apparent importance of the lymphatic vessels for tumor dissemination, it has remained unclear whether activation of lymphatic endothelial cells may affect tumor progression and metastasis and the molecular mechanisms of lymphangiogenesis are just beginning to be elucidated. This overview describes the unique structural and functional characteristics of the lymphatic vessels that render them particularly suitable for invasion by tumor cells and for their efficient transport to lymph nodes. Recent evidence indicates occurrence of tumor lymphangiogenesis and its correlation with metastasis. Molecular regulation of tumor lymphangiogenesis, its significance for tumor metastasis, and implications for cancer therapy are discussed. Microsc. Res. Tech. 55:92–99, 2001. © 2001 Wiley‐Liss, Inc. [2]

Cancer metastasis: issues and challenges

Metastasis is the major cause of treatment failure in cancer patients and of cancer-related deaths. This editorial discusses how cancer metastasis may be better perceived and controlled. Based on big-data analyses, a collection of 150 important pro-metastatic genes was studied. Using The Cancer Genome Atlas datasets to re-analyze the effect of some previously reported metastatic genes—e.g., JAM2, PPARGC1A, SIK2, and TRAF6—on overall survival of patients with renal and liver cancers, we found that these genes are actually protective factors for patients with cancer. The role of epithelial–mesenchymal transition (EMT) in single-cell metastasis has been well-documented. However, in metastasis caused by cancer cell clusters, EMT may not be necessary. A novel role of epithelial marker E-cadherin, as a sensitizer for chemoresistant prostate cancer cells by inhibiting Notch signaling, has been found. This editorial also discusses the obstacles for developing anti-metastatic drugs, including the lack of high-throughput technologies for identifying metastasis inhibitors, less application of animal models in the pre-clinical evaluation of the leading compounds, and the need for adjustments in clinical trial design to better reflect the anti-metastatic efficacy of new drugs. We are confident that by developing more effective high-throughput technologies to identify metastasis inhibitors, we can better predict, prevent, and treat cancer metastasis. [3]

Small Cell Lung Carcinoma with Overt Cutaneous Metastasis; Unusual Case

Small cell lung carcinoma is a rapidly progressive neuroendocrine tumor having a poor prognosis. It is considered as a systemic disease, because it has diffuse involvement, distant organ metastasis, and regional lymphatic involvement at the time of initial diagnosis. While small cell lung carcinomahas a lot of metastasis to bone, liver, surrenal and other hemithorax in the onset of disease, cutaneous metastasis are rarely seen. Skin metastasis are encountered in lower than 0.5% of the patients with metastatic diseases. In this article, we aimed to present a case of small cell lung carcinoma with cutaneous metastasis which is rarely seen in the literature. [4]

Evolutionary Basis of Cancer Metastasis and Its Implication to a Lasting Cure

This review is intended to take us through a journey on how cancer had been treated and highlight the paradigm shift in understanding its treatment since adoption of evolution concept and hope to point to a possible future breakthrough in cancer management. Researchers estimate there will be 26 million or more new cases a year by 2030, and some 17 million cancer deaths yearly. The US president in 1971 Richard Nixon proposed the war on cancer in a bid to find lasting cure to cancer in the space of 25 years. An evaluation was carried out after 25 years, which, showed that although there had been major breakthrough in the battle against cancer yet the war continues and we are not yet close to a definite victory with local invasion, and distant metastasis that is resistant to conventional therapy being the major causes of death. This attitude of cancer cells had been more understood in the light of ecology and evolution in recent years as the Darwinian theory of evolution by natural selection now becomes a theoretical framework for the study of cancer behaviour. However, the implication of this eye opener to the cure of cancer had to be more highlighted if the moon shot war against cancer as declared by President Obama in 2016 would be successful. Early diagnosis taking into cognizance polyploidy parameters, more specific choice and scheduling of cancer treatment; selective toxicity, Inhibiting other chemicals or factors that initiate and sustains angiogenesis in cancer cells (tumour or human specific), supporting the immune system, boosting normal cell fitness and Restoring a more normal ecological niche may be the answer we have long sorted for as we strive to find a lasting cure to cancer. [5]


[1] Mowers, E.E., Sharifi, M.N. and Macleod, K.F., 2017. Autophagy in cancer metastasis. Oncogene, 36(12), pp.1619-1630.

[2] Swartz, M.A. and Skobe, M., 2001. Lymphatic function, lymphangiogenesis, and cancer metastasis. Microscopy research and technique, 55(2), pp.92-99.

[3] Qian, C.N., Mei, Y. and Zhang, J., 2017. Cancer metastasis: issues and challenges.

[4] Yasar, Z., Tekelıoglu, V., Can, G., Yuce, Y., Ozyalvaclı, G. and Uyeturk, U. (2015) “Small Cell Lung Carcinoma with Overt Cutaneous Metastasis; Unusual Case”, Journal of Advances in Medicine and Medical Research, 6(6), pp. 625-629. doi: 10.9734/BJMMR/2015/13754.

[5] O. Adesuyi, E., A. Obaila, D. and A. Aladeyelu, M. (2016) “Evolutionary Basis of Cancer Metastasis and Its Implication to a Lasting Cure”, Journal of Cancer and Tumor International, 4(4), pp. 1-16. doi: 10.9734/JCTI/2016/27710.

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