Cancer stem cells (CSCs), also known as tumor-initiating cells (TICs), are a subpopulation of cancer cells that possess the self-renewal and multi/pluripotency properties similar to that of normal stem cells. They have been identified to be tumorigenic and linked with inducing metastasis. Several molecular signaling pathways are associated with governing stem cell homeostasis. Normally, these pathways are highly regulated. However, an increasing number of these signaling pathways have been discovered to become dysfunctional in CSCs, which include the JAK/STAT, Hedgehog, Wnt, Notch, NF-κB, PI3K and PTEN signaling pathways. In certain cases, cross-talk between different pathways contribute to CSC population maintenance.

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