Mechanisms of invasion in head and neck cancer

Lizandra Jimenez, Sangeeta K. Jayakar, Thomas J. Ow, Jeffrey E. Segall

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Context.-The highly invasive properties demonstrated by head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) are often associated with locoregional recurrence and lymph node metastasis in patients and is a key factor leading to an expected 5-year survival rate of approximately 50% for patients with advanced disease. It is important to understand the features and mediators of HNSCC invasion so that new treatment approaches can be developed. Objectives.-To provide an overview of the characteristics, mediators, and mechanisms of HNSCC invasion. Data Sources.-A literature review of peer-reviewed articles in PubMed on HNSCC invasion. Conclusions.-Histologic features of HNSCC tumors can help predict prognosis and influence clinical treatment decisions. Cell surface receptors, signaling pathways, proteases, invadopodia function, epithelial-mesenchymal transition, microRNAs, and tumor microenvironment are all involved in the regulation of the invasive behavior of HNSCC cells. Identifying effective HNSCC invasion inhibitors has the potential to improve outcomes for patients by reducing the rate of spread and increasing responsiveness to chemoradiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1334-1348
Number of pages15
JournalArchives of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Medical Laboratory Technology


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