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The Potential Role of Interleukin-11 in Epithelial Ovarian Cancer

Author(s): Nikhil Arora, Nuzhat Ahmed2, Rodney B. Luwor

Interleukin-11 (IL-11) has recently gained attention in cancer biology, and there is now an upsurge in IL-11 research with studies implicating a role of IL-11 in several human cancers of epithelial and hematopoietic origins. The identification of the pro-tumorigenic activities elicited by IL-11 has placed a new focus on generating therapeutic agents that will inhibit the IL-11 signaling pathway. However, the precise role of IL-11 signaling remains elusive in epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC). The purpose of this review is to describe the ovarian tumor microenvironment and delineate the possible sources and functions of IL-11 in EOC. Taking a holistic view of the dynamics of IL-11 in other cancer types, we have elucidated the potential role of IL-11 signaling in ovarian tumor cell biology and have also provided future recommendations to exactly decipher and target the signaling pathway in EOC. Improved understanding of the ovarian tumor microenvironment, particularly the IL-11 biology, would shed more light on EOC progression and enable the design of better-targeted therapies to manage this disease effectively.

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