Impacts of environmental factors on head and neck cancer pathogenesis and progression

Marisol Miranda-Galvis, Reid Loveless, Luiz Paulo Kowalski, Yong Teng

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Epidemiological and clinical studies over the past two decades have provided strong evidence that genetic elements interacting with environmental components can individually and col-lectively influence one’s susceptibility to cancer. In addition to tumorigenic properties, numerous environmental factors, such as nutrition, chemical carcinogens, and tobacco/alcohol consumption, possess pro-invasive and pro-metastatic cancer features. In contrast to traditional cancer treatment, modern therapeutics not only take into account an individual’s genetic makeup but also consider gene–environment interactions. The current review sharpens the focus by elaborating on the impact that environmental factors have on the pathogenesis and progression of head and neck cancer and the underlying molecular mechanisms involved. Recent advances, challenges, and future perspec-tives in this area of research are also discussed. Inhibiting key environmental drivers of tumor progression should yield survival benefits for patients at any stage of head and neck cancer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number389
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • Anticancer
  • Environmental factors
  • Head and neck cancer
  • Metastasis
  • Modern therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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