Single cell RNA sequencing for understanding the lineage of cancer cells

Article in Nature, Vol. 539, 10 November 2016, pp. 309, “Single-cell RNA-seq supports a developmental hierarchy in human oligodendroglioma”


Summary of article: Single cell RNA sequencing of cancer cells from human oligodendroglioma reveals hierarchical development pathway in the cancer; thereby, opening up the technique for use in profiling the developmental pathway and lineage traversed by the tumour, which offers clues to cancer prognosis.


Use of single cell RNA sequencing, while effective in understanding the transcriptome of the cancer cell important to identifying cancer stem cells and other cancer cells through profiling for copy number variation, is nevertheless time consuming and tedious. Additionally, the technique also consumes a lot of resources and time per cell extracted from a patient’s tumour. Thus, for the purpose of understanding the lineage and developmental pathway taken by cancer cells within a tumour, a metagenomics and meta-proteomics approach analysing the pooled samples of cancer cells of a tumour for tell-tale signs of slight variation of a marker gene or protein, may be a more expeditious approach for delineating the lineage trajectory of cancer cells of a tumour.


Link to original article:


Category: Interesting scientific articles, cancer, developmental biology,

Tags: RNA sequencing, single cell, oligodendroglioma, development pathway, lineage, cancer cells, cell fate,


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s