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Bonekey Rep. 2015 Sep 9;4:742. doi: 10.1038/bonekey.2015.111. eCollection 2015.

The vasculature: a vessel for bone metastasis.

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Laboratory of Clinical and Experimental Endocrinology, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, KU Leuven , Leuven, Belgium.


Emerging evidence indicates that the interactions between tumor cells and the bone microenvironment have a crucial role in the pathogenesis of bone metastasis and that they can influence tumor cell dissemination, quiescence and tumor growth in the bone. The vasculature is known to be critical for primary tumor growth, and anti-angiogenesis drugs are approved for the treatment of certain tumor types. The role of the vasculature in bone metastasis is less well known, but recent evidence shows that blood vessels in the bone are a key component of the local microenvironment for the tumor cells and contribute to the different consecutive phases of bone metastasis. A better insight in the importance of the vasculature for bone metastasis may help develop novel treatment modalities that either slow down tumor growth or, preferably, prevent or cure bone metastasis.

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