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Journal of Cancer Prevention

Original Article

J Cancer Prev 2022; 27(2): 122-128

Published online June 30, 2022

© Korean Society of Cancer Prevention

Identification of Stem Cell Related Gene Expression from the Osteosarcoma Cell Core Side

Chaemoon Lim1 , Young Ho Roh1 , Seung Jin Yoo1 , Dong Kee Jeong2,† , Kwang Woo Nam3

1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Jeju National University Hospital, 2Laboratory of Animal Genetic Engineering and Stem Cell Biology, Department of Animal Biotechnology, Faculty of Biotechnology, Jeju National University, Jeju, 3Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Uijeongbu Eulji Medical Center, Eulji University, Uijeongbu, Korea

Correspondence to :
Kwang Woo Nam, E-mail:,
Dong Kee Jeong passed away on March 24th 2019.

Received: April 21, 2022; Revised: May 29, 2022; Accepted: May 31, 2022

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License, which permits unrestricted noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Osteosarcoma is the most frequent primary malignant bone tumor with higher incidences in children and adolescents. Despite clinical evolutions, patients with osteosacoma have had a poor prognosis. There has been increasing evidence that cancer is a stem cell disease. This study sought to isolate and characterize cancer stem cells from human osteosarcoma with relevant literature reviews. Here we show that the emerging evidence suggests osteosarcoma should be regarded as a differentiation disease such as stem cell disease. Two human osteosarcoma cell lines were cultured in non-adherent culture conditions as sarcospheres. Sarcospheres were observed using histomorphology and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) staining. Expression of the embryonic stem cell marker was analyzed with use of reverse transcriptase-PCR. Sarcospheres could be reproduced consistently throughout multiple passages and produced adherent osteosarcoma cell cultures. Expression of stem cell-associated genes such as those encoding Nanog, octamer-binding transcription factor 3/4, sex determining region Y box 2 , c-Myc and ALP indicated pluripotent stem-like cells. These results support the extension of the cancer stem cell theory to include osteosarcoma. Understanding the cancer stem cell derived from human osteosarcoma could lead to the evolution of diagnosis and treatment for osteosarcoma patients.

Keywords: Osteosarcoma, Neoplastic stem cells

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