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J Vis Exp. 2018 Aug 29;(138). doi: 10.3791/58152.

Live-Cell Imaging Assays to Study Glioblastoma Brain Tumor Stem Cell Migration and Invasion.

Author information

1
Hotchkiss Brain Institute, Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary.
2
Hotchkiss Brain Institute, Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary; Department of Developmental and Stem Cell Biology Program, Arthur and Sonia Labatt Brain Tumor Research Centre, The Hospital for Sick Children.
3
Hotchkiss Brain Institute, Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy, Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary; aluchman@ucalgary.ca.

Abstract

Glioblastoma (GBM) is an aggressive brain tumor that is poorly controlled with the currently available treatment options. Key features of GBMs include rapid proliferation and pervasive invasion into the normal brain. Recurrence is thought to result from the presence of radio- and chemo-resistant brain tumor stem cells (BTSCs) that invade away from the initial cancerous mass and, thus, evade surgical resection. Hence, therapies that target BTSCs and their invasive abilities may improve the otherwise poor prognosis of this disease. Our group and others have successfully established and characterized BTSC cultures from GBM patient samples. These BTSC cultures demonstrate fundamental cancer stem cell properties such as clonogenic self-renewal, multi-lineage differentiation, and tumor initiation in immune-deficient mice. In order to improve on the current therapeutic approaches for GBM, a better understanding of the mechanisms of BTSC migration and invasion is necessary. In GBM, the study of migration and invasion is restricted, in part, due to the limitations of existing techniques which do not fully account for the in vitro growth characteristics of BTSCs grown as neurospheres. Here, we describe rapid and quantitative live-cell imaging assays to study both the migration and invasion properties of BTSCs. The first method described is the BTSC migration assay which measures the migration toward a chemoattractant gradient. The second method described is the BTSC invasion assay which images and quantifies a cellular invasion from neurospheres into a matrix. The assays described here are used for the quantification of BTSC migration and invasion over time and under different treatment conditions.

PMID:
30222149
PMCID:
PMC6231945
DOI:
10.3791/58152
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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