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Invasion and metastasis 

Invasion and metastasis
Invasion and metastasis

Andrew P. Mazar

, Andrey Ugolkov

, Jack Henkin

, Richard W. Ahn

, and Thomas V. O’Halloran


March 29, 2019: This chapter has been re-evaluated and remains up-to-date. No changes have been necessary.

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date: 07 July 2020

Mortality in cancer patients usually occurs as a result of dissemination of their disease, a multi-factorial process called metastasis. This chapter discusses current understanding of how metastasis occurs and the pathways and cellular interactions that contribute to this process. Current views on lymphatic, haematogenous, and direct dissemination of metastatic cells through body cavities are considered, along with the contribution of tumour stromal cells, immune, and infiltrating cells derived from bone marrow, and angiogenesis to the metastatic process. Recent advances in characterizing metastatic niches and the contribution of specific organ sites and microenvironments to metastatic progression are presented, and the identification and characterization of circulating tumour cells and their role in metastasis are considered. Finally, representative molecular pathways as well as a sampling of new drugs in development for the treatment of metastatic disease are presented and referenced.

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