Stem cells build and maintain organisms. Accordingly, they are particularly well-protected from damage to DNA and other cellular components. This feature becomes a serious drawback when stem cells transform and develop cancer, because they resist to radiation and chemotherapy. Various mechanisms ensure protection of stem cells. In normal stem cells enhanced DNA repair is often one of them. Whether the same holds for cancer stem cells still is an open question.
Keywords: Stem cells, differentiation, DNA repair, CD133, cancer
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