Head and Neck Cancer Stem Cell Research
Will research on cancer stem cells help patients with head and neck cancer?Scientists hope so, but there's a lot of work that needs to be done. There's still so much researchers don't understand about cancer stem cells, especially their propensity to spread and be resistant to treatment. Some scientists believe aggressive tumors have a different subtype of cancer stem cells than less aggressive cancers. At this point, no one knows for sure.
One big question is why some cancers are associated with tobacco use and some aren't. There almost certainly is a causal relationship between head and neck cancer and tobacco use, but scientists don't understand why. Could tobacco use cause cancer stem cells to develop in the first place? What role does smoking play in the development of cancer? These are major unanswered questions.