A growing body of evidence suggests that glioma stem cells (GSCs) account for tumor initiation, therapy resistance, and the
subsequent regrowth of gliomas. Thus, continuous efforts have been undertaken to further characterize this subpopulation of less differentiated
tumor cells. Although we are able to enrich GSCs, we still lack a comprehensive understanding of GSC phenotypes and behavior.
The advent of high-throughput technologies raised hope that incorporation of these newly developed platforms would help to tackle
such questions. Since then a couple of comparative genome-, transcriptome- and proteome-wide studies on GSCs have been conducted
giving new insights in GSC biology. However, lessons had to be learned in designing high-throughput experiments and some of the resulting
conclusions fell short of expectations because they were performed on only a few GSC lines or at one molecular level instead of
an integrative poly-omics approach. Despite these shortcomings, our knowledge of GSC biology has markedly expanded due to a number
of survival-associated biomarkers as well as glioma-relevant signaling pathways and therapeutic targets being identified. In this article we
review recent findings obtained by comparative high-throughput analyses of GSCs. We further summarize fundamental concepts of systems
biology as well as its applications for glioma stem cell research.
Keywords: Stem cells, glioblastoma, systems biology, profiling, top-down, high-throughput, omics, integrative analysis.
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