About this Research Topic
Cancer Development is a multistep process, involving cellular mutation, with selectivity for cells with a high proliferative capacity, survival, invasion and metastasis. The signal transduction pathways that regulate normal cell growth are usually disrupted and abnormal in cancer cells. The mechanisms of these dysregulated signaling pathways provide unique characteristic properties and descriptions of the malignancy at the molecular and cellular level. The loss of growth control observed in the cancer cells is the result of the accumulation of multiple, disordered steps in the regulated signaling cascade. Understanding the regulatory mechanisms and the specific connections in the various signal transduction pathways during cancer progression will help researchers to design futuristic and targeted therapies. Additionally, complex interconnections between signaling pathways may hold the key for a long term cancer cure.
The aim of this Research Topic is to further the understanding of basic cancer biology with regards to signaling pathways and an associated focus on therapeutics and clinical discoveries. Efforts should also be focused on developing understanding around the mechanism of action of therapeutic drugs. Tamoxifen and platinum, for example, are used extensively in treating certain types of tumors but are still poorly understood in terms of the signaling pathways which they target. Equally, the tumor microenvironment, metabolic content and signaling pathways could hold solutions to explaining the positive and negative responses to cancer therapies. Additional investigation into multi-dimensional strategies encompassing signaling molecules, RNAi, antibodies and small molecule inhibitors could provide the necessary specificity to distinguish cancer cells from their normal counterparts, which could provide an opportunity to explore future therapies which correct these distorted pathways.
In our Research Topic, articles that focus on but are not limited to the following topics are welcomed:
- The process by which normal cells are transformed into malignant cells through the changes in the microenvironment.
- Processes that modify the cellular activities and gene expression of an amplified cellular response, with priming of receptor ligand activity and cascading events of the intracellular biochemical pathways.
- Activation of kinases which alter post-translational modifications of key proteins, and investigation of the functional implications of such changes.
- The role of non-enzymatic secondary messengers, including lipids, adaptor proteins and ion binding proteins.
- Signaling pathways downstream of RTKs targeted by the PI3K-Akt pathway, the Ras GTPase, Raf-MEK-ERK MAP kinase, GAP-Rheb GTPase , Wnt signaling, NFkB, Jak/STAT signaling and Notch pathway.
Keywords: cancer, signal transduction, tumor microenvironment, signaling pathways
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.