Antigenic and Genotypic Similarity between Primary Glioblastomas and Their Derived Neurospheres

J Oncol. 2011;2011:314962. doi: 10.1155/2011/314962. Epub 2011 Aug 18.


Formation of neurospheres (NS) in cultures of glioblastomas (GBMs), with self-renewal, clonogenic capacities, and tumorigenicity following transplantation into immunodeficient mice, may denounce the existence of brain tumor stem cells (BTSCs) in vivo. In sixteen cell lines from resected primary glioblastomas, NS showed the same genetic alterations as primary tumors and the expression of stemness antigens. Adherent cells (AC), after adding 10% of fetal bovine serum (FBS) to the culture, were genetically different from NS and prevailingly expressed differentiation antigens. NS developed from a highly malignant tumor phenotype with proliferation, circumscribed necrosis, and high vessel density. Beside originating from transformed neural stem cells (NSCs), BTSCs may be contained within or correspond to dedifferentiated cells after mutation accumulation, which reacquire the expression of stemness antigens.