Hedgehog signalling pathway: Carcinogenesis and targeted therapy
Mohamad Reza Ebrahimi
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Hedgehog signalling pathway has not only a critical role in cell proliferation, differentiation and tissue polarity at embryonic period but also has a vital role in stem cell proliferation, tissue healing and carcinogenesis. Recent research has increased our understanding of this pathway and its relation to other signalling pathways. In addition, a large number of studies confirmed the alteration of Hh signalling pathway in various types of human malignancies including basal cell carcinomas, medulloblastomas, lung, gastrointestinal, ovarian, breast, prostate cancers and leukemia. More than 50 small biomolecules have been introduced which have inhibitory effects on Hh signalling pathway. Although, in many tumors some acceptable results have been showed in phase I clinical trial, closer studies are required to improve drug bioavailability, to decrease the side effects and to find the right small molecules for specific types of cancers, considering patients overall benefits as well.