Adapting to adversity: new research sheds light on how tumors adapt to low-oxygen environments

Written by Adam Price-Evans

Researchers from the Wistar Institute (Philadelphia, PA, USA), led by Dario Altieri, have identified the mechanism by which tumors adapt in order to survive and thrive in hypoxic environments. The team has identified a cellular pathway that is selectively activated in hypoxic tumors, which facilitates their survival and proliferation despite the low oxygen environment. Treatment of tumors is complicated by their ability to adapt to unfavorable conditions. Hypoxia, for example, instead of abating tumors causes the malignant cells to compensate for the lack of oxygen and results in more aggressive behavior. The underlying mechanism of this unexpected action, however, is...

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