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Cell Cycle. 2010 Aug 1;9(15):3012-21. doi: 10.4161/cc.9.15.12710.

The perivascular niche microenvironment in brain tumor progression.

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Department of Cancer Biology and Genetics, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, NY, USA.


Glioblastoma, the most frequent and aggressive malignant brain tumor, has a very poor prognosis of approximately 1-year. The associated aggressive phenotype and therapeutic resistance of glioblastoma is postulated to be due to putative brain tumor stem-like cells (BTSC). The best hope for improved therapy lies in the ability to understand the molecular biology that controls BTSC behavior. The tumor vascular microenvironment of brain tumors has emerged as important regulators of BTSC behavior. Emerging data have identified the vascular microenvironment as home to a multitude of cell types engaged in various signaling that work collectively to foster a supportive environment for BTSCs. Characterization of the signaling pathways and intercellular communication between resident cell types in the microvascular niche of brain tumors is critical to the identification of potential BTSC-specific targets for therapy.

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