Glioma tropic neural stem cells consist of astrocytic precursors and their migratory capacity is mediated by CXCR4

Neoplasia. May-Jun 2004;6(3):287-93. doi: 10.1593/neo.3427.


Malignant gliomas spawn disseminated microsatellites, which are largely refractory to currently employed therapies, resulting in eventual tumor recurrence and death. The use of tumor-tropic neural stem cells (NSCs) as delivery vehicles for therapeutic gene products represents an attractive strategy specifically focused at treating these residual neoplastic foci. We wished to elucidate the biological cues governing NSC tropism for glioma. In this context, we describe that tumor-tropic NSCs comprise largely of astrocytic progenitors expressing chemokine receptor 4 (CXCR4). Blocking of CXCR4 significantly inhibits NSC migration toward the tumor. These findings define specific characteristics associated with the cell populations within transplanted NSCs that demonstrate glioma-tracking behavior.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Astrocytes / metabolism
  • Astrocytes / pathology*
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Movement* / drug effects
  • Culture Media, Conditioned / pharmacology
  • Glioma / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Models, Neurological
  • Neurons / drug effects
  • Neurons / pathology*
  • Neurons / transplantation
  • Receptors, CXCR4 / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Receptors, CXCR4 / metabolism
  • Stem Cell Transplantation
  • Stem Cells / drug effects
  • Stem Cells / pathology*


  • Culture Media, Conditioned
  • Receptors, CXCR4