The role of stem cells in tumor targeting and growth suppression of gliomas

Biologics. 2011;5:61-70. doi: 10.2147/BTT.S17838. Epub 2011 Apr 5.


Glioma remains the most challenging solid organ tumor to treat successfully. Based on the capacity of stem cells to migrate extensively and target invading glioma cells, the transplantation of stem cells as a cell-based delivery system may provide additional tools for the treatment of gliomas. In addition to the use of modified stem cells for the delivery of therapeutic agents, unmodified stem cells have been shown to have growth-suppressing effects on tumors in vitro and in vivo. This review outlines the probable factors involved in tumor tropism and tumor growth suppression, with a specific focus on the use of unmodified stem cells in the treatment of gliomas. Based on these and further future data, clinical trials may be justified.

Keywords: brain tumor; glioma; growth suppression; stem cell; tropism.