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Cancer Lett. 2011 Dec 27;313(2):137-44. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2011.05.030. Epub 2011 Jun 24.

Combination of salinomycin and gemcitabine eliminates pancreatic cancer cells.

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  • 1Department of General Surgery, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Beijing 100730, China.


Previous research has documented that a subpopulation of pancreatic cancer cells, named cancer stem cells (CSCs), harbor stem cell-like properties. Here, we examined the efficacy of combined treatments of salinomycin and gemcitabine in human pancreatic cancer cells. Salinomycin inhibited the growth of CSCs, while gemcitabine suppressed the viability of non-CSCs. Consistently, in vivo studies showed that salinomycin combined with gemcitabine could eliminate the engraftment of human pancreatic cancer more effectively than the individual agents. These data indicated that administration of salinomycin, which targets CSCs, may constitute a potential therapeutic strategy for improving the efficacy of gemcitabine to eradicate pancreatic cancer.

Copyright © 2011. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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