An Overview of the Role of Senescence in Cancer

Abstract

Senescence is generally viewed as a mechanism to protect humans against the development of diseases including cancer in addition to its wider physiological functions. Through this mechanism, normal cells suffering from stress are converted into senescent cells which remain metabolically active but lose their proliferative capacity. However, the persistent presence of the senescent cells can lead to unwanted consequences in that they facilitate the onset of aging and enhance the development of cancer. This narrative review examines the role of senescence in cancer and the possibility of employing senotherapies for harnessing the effects of, or eliminating, senescent cells.