Epigenetic and Immune Regulation of Colorectal Cancer Stem Cells

Amy V. Paschall, Kebin Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Colorectal cancer stem cells (CSCs) were initially considered to be a subset of undifferentiated tumor cells with well-defined phenotypic and molecular markers. However, emerging evidence indicates instead that colorectal CSCs are heterogeneous subsets of tumor cells that are continuously reshaped by the dynamic interactions between genetic, epigenetic, and immune factors in the tumor microenvironment. Thus, the colorectal CSC phenotypes and responsiveness to therapy may not only be a tumor cell-intrinsic feature but also depend on tumor-extrinsic microenvironmental factors. Furthermore, emerging evidence also implicates colorectal CSCs in potential immune evasion. Therefore, understanding how colorectal CSC-intrinsic mechanisms cooperate with the extrinsic microenvironmental factors to dynamically shape colorectal CSC resistance to chemotherapy and immunotherapy holds great promise for development of targeted CSC therapies of advanced human CRC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)414-421
Number of pages8
JournalCurrent Colorectal Cancer Reports
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015


  • Chemoresistance
  • Colorectal cancer stem cells
  • DNA methylation
  • Epigenetic regulation
  • Epigenetics
  • Histone acetylation
  • Histone methylation
  • IL-22
  • Immune evasion
  • MDSCs
  • microRNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hepatology
  • Oncology
  • Gastroenterology


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