Pancreatic cancer biology and genetics from an evolutionary perspective

Alvin Makohon-Moore, Christine A. Iacobuzio-Donahue

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Cancer is an evolutionary disease, containing the hallmarks of an asexually reproducing unicellular organism subject to evolutionary paradigms. Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (hereafter referred to as pancreatic cancer) is a particularly robust example of this phenomenon. Genomic features indicate that pancreatic cancer cells are selected for fitness advantages when encountering the geographic and resource-depleted constraints of the microenvironment. Phenotypic adaptations to these pressures help disseminated cells to survive in secondary sites, a major clinical problem for patients with this disease. In this Review we gather the wide-ranging aspects of pancreatic cancer research into a single concept rooted in Darwinian evolution, with the goal of identifying novel insights and opportunities for study.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)553-565
Number of pages13
JournalNature Reviews Cancer
Volume16
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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