Cancer Stem Cells in Moderately Differentiated Lip Tongue Squamous Cell Carcinoma Express Components of the Renin-Angiotensin System

Authors: Rachna S. Ram, Helen D. Brasch, Jonathan C. Dunne, Paul F. Davis, Swee T. Tan and Tinte Itinteang

Frontiers in Surgery – Otorhinolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery June 2017. Vol.4: doi:10.3389 /fsurg. 2017.00030

Earlier research undertaken by the team at the Gillies McIndoe Research Institute has identified and characterised cancer stem cells in tongue cancer, buccal mucosal (inner cheek) cancer, and lip cancer. The team has also shown that cancer stem cells in tongue cancer and buccal mucosal cancer express the renin-angiotensin system.

The GMRI has previously reported that there are three types of cancer stem cells in lip cancer. In this study, we show that the cancer stem cells in lip cancer also possess the constituents of the renin-angiotensin system. Two of the three types of cancer stem cells express at least three components of the renin-angiotensin system. It is also interesting that a fourth constituent of this system is present in the cells that line the walls of small blood vessels.

These findings mirror what the GMRI has reported for other types of cancers, supporting our novel approach of treatment of cancer by targeting the cancer stem cells – considered to be the root of cancer – through modulation of the renin-angiotensin system using affordable, low-cost safe medications.