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Chin J Cancer. 2017 Jun 24;36(1):52. doi: 10.1186/s40880-017-0219-2.

Autophagy and multidrug resistance in cancer.

Author information

1
Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine & Natural Products, College of Pharmacy, Jinan University, Guangzhou, 510632, Guangdong, P. R. China.
2
Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine & Natural Products, College of Pharmacy, Jinan University, Guangzhou, 510632, Guangdong, P. R. China. dmzhang701@foxmail.com.
3
Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine & Natural Products, College of Pharmacy, Jinan University, Guangzhou, 510632, Guangdong, P. R. China. chenz@stjohns.edu.
4
Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, St. John's University, Queens, NY, 11439, USA. chenz@stjohns.edu.

Abstract

Multidrug resistance (MDR) occurs frequently after long-term chemotherapy, resulting in refractory cancer and tumor recurrence. Therefore, combatting MDR is an important issue. Autophagy, a self-degradative system, universally arises during the treatment of sensitive and MDR cancer. Autophagy can be a double-edged sword for MDR tumors: it participates in the development of MDR and protects cancer cells from chemotherapeutics but can also kill MDR cancer cells in which apoptosis pathways are inactive. Autophagy induced by anticancer drugs could also activate apoptosis signaling pathways in MDR cells, facilitating MDR reversal. Therefore, research on the regulation of autophagy to combat MDR is expanding and is becoming increasingly important. We summarize advanced studies of autophagy in MDR tumors, including the variable role of autophagy in MDR cancer cells.

KEYWORDS:

Autophagy; Cell death; Cell survival; Drug resistance; Neoplasms

PMID:
28646911
PMCID:
PMC5482965
DOI:
10.1186/s40880-017-0219-2
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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