The dynamic control of signal transduction networks in cancer cells

Nat Rev Cancer. 2015 Sep;15(9):515-27. doi: 10.1038/nrc3983. Epub 2015 Aug 20.


Cancer is often considered a genetic disease. However, much of the enormous plasticity of cancer cells to evolve different phenotypes, to adapt to challenging microenvironments and to withstand therapeutic assaults is encoded by the structure and spatiotemporal dynamics of signal transduction networks. In this Review, we discuss recent concepts concerning how the rich signalling dynamics afforded by these networks are regulated and how they impinge on cancer cell proliferation, survival, invasiveness and drug resistance. Understanding this dynamic circuitry by mathematical modelling could pave the way to new therapeutic approaches and personalized treatments.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Proliferation
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Neoplasms / genetics
  • Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Neoplasms / pathology
  • Signal Transduction*