Precancer: a conceptual working definition -- results of a Consensus Conference.

Cancer Diagnosis Program, National Cancer Institute, NIH, Bethesda, MD, USA.
Cancer Detection and Prevention (Impact Factor: 2.52). 02/2006; 30(5):387-94. DOI: 10.1016/j.cdp.2006.09.002
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Precancers are lesions that precede the appearance of invasive cancers. The successful prevention or treatment of precancers has the potential to eliminate deaths due to cancer.
A National Cancer Institute-sponsored Conference on Precancer was convened on November 8-9, 2004, at The George Washington University Medical Center, Washington, DC. A definition of precancers was developed over 2 days of Conference discussions.
The following five criteria define a precancer: (1) evidence must exist that the precancer is associated with an increased risk of cancer; (2) when a precancer progresses to cancer, the resulting cancer arises from cells within the precancer; (3) a precancer differs from the normal tissue from which it arises; (4) a precancer differs from the cancer into which it develops, although it has some, but not all, of the molecular and phenotypic properties that characterize the cancer; (5) there is a method by which the precancer can be diagnosed.
The Conference participants developed a general definition for precancers that would provide a consistent and clinically useful way of distinguishing precancers from all other types of lesions. It was recognized that many precancerous lesions may not meet this strict definition, but the group felt it was necessary to define criteria that will help standardize clinical and biological studies. Furthermore, a set of defining criteria for putative precancer lesions will permit pathologists to build a diagnostically useful taxonomy of precancers based on specified clinical and biological properties. Precancers thus characterized can be classified into clinically relevant sub-groups based on shared properties (i.e. biomarkers, oncogenes, common metabolic pathways, responses to therapy, etc.). Publications that introduce newly described precancer entities should describe how each of the five defining criteria apply. This manuscript reviews the proposed definition of precancers and suggests how pathologists, oncologists and cancer researchers may determine when these criteria are satisfied.

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Pancreatic cancer is the fourth most common cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States, with over 38000 deaths in 2013. The opportunity to detect pancreatic cancer while it is still curable is dependent on our ability to identify and screen high-risk populations before their symptoms arise. Risk factors for developing pancreatic cancer include multiple genetic syndromes as well as modifiable risk factors. Genetic conditions include hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndrome, Lynch Syndrome, familial adenomatous polyposis, Peutz-Jeghers Syndrome, familial atypical multiple mole melanoma syndrome, hereditary pancreatitis, cystic fibrosis, and ataxia-telangiectasia; having a genetic predisposition can raise the risk of developing pancreatic cancer up to 132-fold over the general population. Modifiable risk factors, which include tobacco exposure, alcohol use, chronic pancreatitis, diet, obesity, diabetes mellitus, as well as certain abdominal surgeries and infections, have also been shown to increase the risk of pancreatic cancer development. Several large-volume centers have initiated such screening protocols, and consensus-based guidelines for screening high-risk groups have recently been published. The focus of this review will be both the genetic and modifiable risk factors implicated in pancreatic cancer, as well as a review of screening strategies and their diagnostic yields.
    World Journal of Gastroenterology 08/2014; 20(32):11182-11198. DOI:10.3748/wjg.v20.i32.11182 · 2.43 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Cancer stem cells are a small population of cells in a tumor. They have the ability to self-renew and maintain the tumor. The most apt and accepted hypothesis for tumor development is Cancer Stem Cells. This review focuses on this concept of cancer stem cells, serving their purpose and leading to the development of tumor. There are many cell biomarkers which have been described for the identification and characterization of cancer stem cells. The most prominent of the cellular markers for the detection of cancer stem cells; CD133, CD44, ALDH-1 along with some others have been discussed in detail in this review.
    Indian Journal of Cancer 07/2014; 51(3):282-289. DOI:10.4103/0019-509X.146794 · 1.13 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is a malignant tumor associated with a generally poor prognosis and a high rate of recurrence. HCC usually develops in the context of chronic liver diseases, and long-lasting premalignant conditions precede cancer development. A promising therapeutic approach is to eliminate precancerous cells, which are considered as the precursors of cancer stem cells, to prevent further malignant transformation. In this study, we identified a subpopulation of precancerous cells in a rat liver carcinogenesis model, which were enriched in CD133+CD44+CD45-HIS49- cells that formed part of the hepatic oval cells fraction. Prospective isolation of the precancerous cells using flow cytometry identified stem cell properties such as the ability to expand clonally and differentiate into bi-lineage cell types. Furthermore, an acyclic retinoid, which was recently shown to improve overall survival after HCC resection, directly inhibited the extensive expansion of the isolated precancerous cells in vitro and decreased the emergence of the precancerous cells and their progeny in vivo. Long-term follow-up after the acyclic retinoid treatment confirmed reduction in precancerous changes, ultimately resulting in suppression of HCC development. These findings, together with data from recent clinical trials showing marked reduction in intrahepatic recurrence, suggest that acyclic retinoid directly prevents de novo HCC by inhibiting the development of precancerous cells. Given recent advances in diagnostic techniques and the establishment of surveillance programs, the targeting of precancerous cells may have a huge impact on preventative cancer therapies.
    Stem cells and development 05/2014; DOI:10.1089/scd.2013.0577 · 4.20 Impact Factor