The potential of targeting malignant stem cells as a treatment for leukemia

University of Rochester School of Medicine, 601 Elmwood Ave, Box 703 Rochester, NY 14642, USA.
Future Oncology (Impact Factor: 2.48). 05/2005; 1(2):205-7. DOI: 10.1517/14796694.1.2.205
Source: PubMed


Malignant stem cells have recently been described as the source of several types of human cancer. These unique cell types are typically rare and possess properties that are distinct from most other tumor cells. In leukemia, the natural properties of cancer stem cells indicate that current chemotherapy drugs will not be effective. Consequently, new strategies are required that specifically and preferentially target the cancer stem cell population, whilst sparing normal stem cells. This perspective article summarizes recent findings in the leukemia stem cell field and discusses new directions for therapy.

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