Cancer Stem Cells in Brain Tumorigenesis
Pp. 133-171 (39)
Maria Linda Cruceru and Adrian Claudiu Popa
The presence of cancer stem cells in brain tumors has been suggested in the
recent years, extrapolating from other types of malignancies. The actual debate centers
on the possibility that this small group of cells or a single cell can initiate and maintain
such an aggressive malignancy status. Cancer stem cells are a major theme for
aggressive brain tumors, their extensive study offering potential biomarkers for
identification of therapy targets based on abnormal and connected signaling pathways.
This chapter presents the phenomenology of cancer stem cells in their
microenvironment, in its astonishing complexity. Identification markers, pathologic
signaling profiles and cross-talk, microenvironment interactions and novel therapies
targeting cancer stem cells are discussed. Continuous studies are researching genetic
and epigenetic modifications associated with malignant evolution in glioma cancer
stem cells. From the complex entangled signaling pathways presented, one must extract
only the important molecules involved in oncogenesis onset and propagation, putting
aside the coincidentally modified molecules that can be misleading. After removing the
“smoke screen” of oncogenic irrelevant, but modified molecules, there remain the true
therapy targets, to address by specific therapies in a combined manner to overcome the
adapting processes governed by signaling pathway cross-talk.
Anti cancer stem cell therapy, Brain tumors, Cancer stem cells,
Carol Davila University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, Bd. Eroii Sanitari 8, Sector 5, Bucharest, Romania.