Published online Nov 14, 2015. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v21.i42.12190
Peer-review started: May 6, 2015
First decision: June 25, 2015
Revised: July 10, 2015
Accepted: August 31, 2015
Article in press: August 31, 2015
Published online: November 14, 2015
Liver cancer is a common malignancy and surgery is the main treatment strategy. However, the prognosis is still poor because of high frequencies of postoperative recurrence and metastasis. In recent years, cancer stem cell (CSC) theory has evolved with the concept of stem cells, and has been applied to oncological research. According to cancer stem cell theory, liver cancer can be radically cured only by eradication of liver cancer stem cells (LCSCs). This notion has lead to the isolation and identification of LCSCs, which has become a highly researched area. Analysis of LCSC markers is considered to be the primary method for identification of LCSCs. Here, we provide an overview of the current research progress and prospects of surface markers for LCSCs.
Core tip: Liver cancer is a common malignancy and the eradication of liver cancer stem cells (LCSCs) is proposed as the key to improving the curative effect of treatments. Many surface markers have been reported for LCSCs, but there is still no unified standard. This paper addresses the research progress of markers for LCSCs and discusses the relationship with clinical syndrome in hepatocellular carcinoma.