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Cold Spring Harb Perspect Med. 2014 Sep 2;4(9):a013623. doi: 10.1101/cshperspect.a013623.

Modeling cutaneous squamous carcinoma development in the mouse.

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Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California 94158.


Cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is one of the most common cancers in Caucasian populations and is associated with a significant risk of morbidity and mortality. The classic mouse model for studying SCC involves two-stage chemical carcinogenesis, which has been instrumental in the evolution of the concept of multistage carcinogenesis, as widely applied to both human and mouse cancers. Much is now known about the sequence of biological and genetic events that occur in this skin carcinogenesis model and the factors that can influence the course of tumor development, such as perturbations in the oncogene/tumor-suppressor signaling pathways involved, the nature of the target cell that acquires the first genetic hit, and the role of inflammation. Increasingly, studies of tumor-initiating cells, malignant progression, and metastasis in mouse skin cancer models will have the potential to inform future approaches to treatment and chemoprevention of human squamous malignancies.

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