Cancer stem cells, apoptosis pathways and mechanisms of death resistance

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are a small subpopulation of self-renewing malignant and oncogenic cells that drive tumor initiation and progression. CSCs play pivotal roles in tumor initiation, progression, cell death resistance, therapy resistance, and tumor recurrence following treatment and remission. Exposure to chemo- or radiotherapy may also promote “stemness” in nonstem cancer cells. There has been considerable progress towards understanding the mechanisms responsible for CSC self-renewal, maintenance, and expansion. However, the molecular characteristics of CSCs require in-depth investigation. Many mechanisms including the extrinsic and intrinsic apoptotic pathways are dysregulated in CSCs and increase the cytoprotective and therapy resistance mechanisms operating in these cells. Delineating the roles of these mechanisms in maintaining the stemness and self-renewal of CSCs will help to understand how CSCs initiate malignancies and develop cancers and may also lead to the development of potential therapeutic interventions to render CSCs more sensitive to cell death triggered by cancer therapies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationOncogenomics
Subtitle of host publicationFrom Basic Research to Precision Medicine
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9780128117859
ISBN (Print)9780128117866
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018


  • Cancer stem cells
  • Drug resistance
  • Metastasis
  • Tumor progression
  • Tumor recurrence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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  • Cite this

    Safa, A. R. (2018). Cancer stem cells, apoptosis pathways and mechanisms of death resistance. In Oncogenomics: From Basic Research to Precision Medicine (pp. 89-101). Elsevier.