Potential Therapeutic Target Identified to Fight Metastasis in Ovarian Cancer

Potential Therapeutic Target Identified to Fight Metastasis in Ovarian Cancer
High levels of CXCR4, a receptor for signaling molecules that drive cell movement, allow ovarian cancer cells to grow faster and spread to other parts of the body, a study has found. Researchers discovered that inhibiting CXCR4 prevents the dissemination and metastasis in the most aggressive type of ovarian cancer, revealing a new potential therapeutic target for this tumor type. The study, “A Role for CXCR4 in Peritoneal and Hematogenous Ovarian Cancer Dissemination,” appeared in the journal Molecular Cancer Therapeutics. Although several therapeutic advances have been made, about 70 percent of patients diagnosed with ovarian cancer will still have a recurrence, and the overall five-year survival rate is only 42 percent. This is mainly due to late diagnosis, when the cancer is already in an advanced stage and has spread to distant regions in the body. That is the case for most patients with high-grade serous ovarian carcinoma (HGSOC), the most common and aggressive subtype of ovarian cancer. Metastasis is dependent on a process called epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT), which allows cancer cells to detach from one another and enter circulation. Chemokine receptors, such as CXCR4, have been associated with the migration of cancer cells and metastasis. They respond to chemokines, a family of secreted proteins that induce migration in cells expressing their receptors. CXCR4 is broadly expressed in immune cells, and is involved in their recruitment to inflammation sites. In ovarian cancer, CX
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