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Highly Accessed Editorial

Migratory gene expression signature predicts poor patient outcome: Are cancer stem cells to blame?

Max S Wicha

Author Affiliations

University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, 6302 CC, 1500 E. Medical Center Dr., Ann Arbor, MI 48109-5942, USA

Breast Cancer Research 2012, 14:114  doi:10.1186/bcr3338

See related research by Patsialou et al.,

Published: 15 November 2012


Breast cancer metastasis accounts for the majority of deaths from this disease. In the previous issue of Breast Cancer Research, Patsialou and colleagues used a novel in vivo invasion assay to capture migrating breast cancer cells and demonstrate that the gene expression signature of these cells predicts breast cancer metastasis in a large cohort of patients. Furthermore, specific genes identified play a functional role in the invasion of MDA-MB-231 breast cancer cells and in patient-derived breast tumors. These genes regulate pathways known to be induced in invasion and metastases and play an important role in the regulation of cancer stem cells.