Do microenvironmental changes disrupt multicellular organisation with ageing, enacting and favouring the cancer cell phenotype?

Año: 2020
Categoría: Dinámica de especies

Autores: S.P. Castillo, J.E. Keymer, P.A. Marquet

Libro: BioEssays.

Link a la Publicación


Cancer is a singular cellular state, the emergence of which destabilises the homeostasis reached through the evolution to multicellularity. We present the idea that the onset of the cellular disobedience to the metazoan functional and structural architecture, known as the cancer phenotype, is triggered by changes in the cell's external environment that occur with ageing: what ensues is a breach of the social contract of multicellular life characteristic of metazoans.
By integrating old ideas with new evidence, we propose that with ageing the environmental information that maintains a multicellular organisation is eroded, rewiring internal processes of the cell, and resulting in an internal shift towards an ancestral condition resulting in the pseudo-multicellular cancer phenotype. Once that phenotype emerges, a new local social contract is built, different from the homeostatic one, leading to tumour formation and the foundation of a novel local ecosystem.