The Cellular Microenvironment and Metastases

Published on 04/03/2015 by admin

Filed under Hematology, Oncology and Palliative Medicine

Last modified 04/03/2015

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Chapter 3

The Cellular Microenvironment and Metastases

Summary of Key Points

• Metastases are responsible for more than 90% of all cancer-related deaths.

• Gene mutations, the tumor microenvironment, and host cells drive the metastatic spread of tumor cells.

• Metastasis can be subdivided into four steps: invasion, intravasation, survival in circulation, and extravasation.

• Colonization of metastatic tumor cells requires the ability to proliferate in a foreign tissue and stimulate angiogenesis.

• The formation of a premetastatic niche is essential for the growth of extravasating metastatic tumor cells.

• Organ specificity of tumor metastases is determined both by blood flow and tissue-specific factors.

• Primary tumors possess stem cells that can recapitulate the tumor from a single cell, and a subset of these cancer stem cells may inherently possess altered gene expression changes with increased metastatic potential.

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