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J Hepatol. 2014 Jun;60(6):1306-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jhep.2014.02.003. Epub 2014 Feb 12.

Stellate cells and the development of liver cancer: therapeutic potential of targeting the stroma.

Author information

1
Inserm, UMR991, Liver Metabolisms and Cancer, F-35033 Rennes, France; Université de Rennes 1, F-35043 Rennes, France. Electronic address: cedric.coulouarn@inserm.fr.
2
Inserm, UMR991, Liver Metabolisms and Cancer, F-35033 Rennes, France; Université de Rennes 1, F-35043 Rennes, France.

Abstract

Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC) are the most common types of primary tumors in the liver. Although major advances have been made in understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying liver carcinogenesis, HCC and ICC are still deadly cancers worldwide waiting for innovative therapeutic options. Growing evidence from the literature highlight the critical role of the tumor cell microenvironment in the pathogenesis of cancer diseases. Thus, targeting the microenvironment, particularly the crosstalk between tumor cells and stromal cells, has emerged as a promising therapeutic strategy. This strategy would be particularly relevant for liver cancers which frequently develop in a setting of chronic inflammation and microenvironment remodeling associated with hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis, such processes in which hepatic stellate cells (HSC) greatly contribute. This review brings a genomic point of view on the alterations of the cellular microenvironment in liver cancers, particularly the stromal tissue within tumor nodules, emphasizing the importance of the crosstalk between tumor cells and stromal cells, notably activated HSC, in tumor onset and progression. Furthermore, potential therapeutic modalities of targeting the stroma and HSC are discussed.

KEYWORDS:

Fibrosis; Genomics; Hepatic stellate cell; Liver cancer; Microenvironment; Therapeutics

PMID:
24530649
DOI:
10.1016/j.jhep.2014.02.003
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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