Roles of GSK-3 and microRNAs on epithelial mesenchymal transition and cancer stem cells

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Abstract

Various signaling pathways exert critical roles in the epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) and cancer stem cells (CSCs). The Wnt/beta-catenin, PI3K/PTEN/Akt/mTORC, Ras/Raf/MEK/ERK, hedgehog (Hh), Notch and TP53 pathways elicit essential regulatory influences on cancer initiation, EMT and progression. A common kinase involved in all these pathways is moon-lighting kinase glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3). These pathways are also regulated by micro-RNAs (miRs). TP53 and components of these pathways can regulate the expression of miRs. Targeting members of these pathways may improve cancer therapy in those malignancies that display their abnormal regulation. This review will discuss the interactions of the multi-functional GSK-3 enzyme in the Wnt/beta-catenin, PI3K/PTEN/Akt/mTORC, Ras/Raf/MEK/ERK, Hh, Notch and TP53 pathways. The regulation of these pathways by miRs and their effects on CSC generation, EMT, invasion and metastasis will be discussed.

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McCubrey, J. A., Fitzgerald, T. L., Yang, L. V., Lertpiriyapong, K., Steelman, L. S., Abrams, S. L., … Libra, M. (2017). Roles of GSK-3 and microRNAs on epithelial mesenchymal transition and cancer stem cells. Oncotarget. Impact Journals LLC. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.13991

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