Cellular reprogramming to model and study epigenetic alterations in cancer


Although genetic mutations are required for cancer development, reversible non-genetic alterations also play a pivotal role in cancer progression. Failure of well-orchestrated gene regulation by chromatin states and master transcription factors can be one such non-genetic etiology for cancer development. Master transcription factor-mediated cellular reprogramming of human cancer cells allows us to model cancer progression. Here I cover the history and recent advances in reprogramming cancer cells, followed by lessons from cellular reprogramming of normal cells that may apply to cancer. Lastly, I share my perspective on cellular reprogramming for studying epigenetic alterations that have occurred in tumorigenesis, discuss the current limitations, and propose ways to overcome the obstacles in the reprogramming of cancer. Copyright © 2020. Published by Elsevier B.V.

Authors Kim J
Journal Stem cell research
Publication Date 2020 Dec;49:102062
PubMed 33202305
PubMed Central PMC7768185
DOI 10.1016/j.scr.2020.102062

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