Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics (Part 1)

Growth Factors and Cancer

Author(s): Aisha Al Anazi*, Ravi Teja Chitturi Suryaprakash, Kate Shearston and Omar Kujan

Pp: 187-241 (55)

DOI: 10.2174/9789815080384123010008

* (Excluding Mailing and Handling)


Cancer causes major patient morbidity and mortality and is a critical health concern worldwide. The recent GLOBOCAN 2019 factsheet recorded nearly 19.2 million new cancer cases, 9.9 million cancer deaths and 50.55 million people suffering from different kinds of cancer globally within 5 years after diagnosis. Growth factors (GF) are a group of proteins that can affect cellular processes, including differentiation, division, intravasation, extravasation and dissemination. The circulating tumor cells in the bloodstream can populate distant tissues and organs and believe to be the primary cause of metastasis. Extravasation is a crucial phase in the metastasis process, in which tumor cells leave the bloodstream and enter the host tissue. The progress of metastasis is triggered by the tendency of cancer cells to disseminate to target organs from the site of the primary tumor. Despite extensive basic scientific and clinical investigations, cancer is still a major clinical and public health problem. The development of cancer can be influenced by genetics, environmental factors, gene-environment interaction, lifestyle, age and a number of other factors. The harnessing and enhancement of the body’s own cytotoxic cells to prevent basement membrane rupture and the intervening dissemination processes can provide useful insight into the development of cancer. The mutation in oncogenes and tumour suppressor genes, and chromosomal aberration is a cornerstones of the molecular basis of cancer. The basement Membrane (BM) acts as a cell invasion shield, thus identification of processes that underlie in breaching of BM can contribute to understanding the disease pathogenesis. TGF-β is known for its dual function; it requires inhibition in the advanced stage however, the growth inhibitory properties are displayed in the early stages of tumorigenesis. Therefore, inhibition of TGF-β signalling in the CD8+ T cell compartment may be necessary for tumor immunity to be restored. Quantitation of tumour cell dissemination is important and plays significant role in elucidating mechanisms of cancer and strategies for therapeutic intervention. 

Keywords: Cancer, Growth Factors, Oncogenesis, Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors

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