Cancer stem cells originate from normal cells and gain proliferation to grow clonally into metastatic tumors. They stay hidden as seeds, hence their identification and prognosis are necessary for eradication of cancer from root level. Different models are put forth to prove cancer stem cells subsistence via cancer epidemiology, carcinogenesis, biochemistry and molecular biology. This review provides an update on fundamental role of cancer stem cells in cancer progression, with a brief overview on its biochemistry and molecular biology along with its in vitro and in vivo analysis using modern assays with promising therapeutic regimens.
Keywords: Bmi-1, cancer, cancer stem cells, Notch, Shh, signaling pathway, stem cells, telomerase, therapeutics, tumor.