Mise en abyme meaning "placed into abyss or infinite recurrence" is an apt paradigm for the relentless growth of sarcoma cells. Its alternative meaning, "self-reflexive embedding" fits the central role attributed to cancer stem cells (CSCs). Diversely sourced and defined, mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) may be the cells of sarcoma origin, evolve a CSC phenotype and/or contribute to tumor growth through inherent qualities for homing, neovascularization, paracrine cross-feeding, microvesicle secretion, cell fusion, entosis and immune modulation. Exploiting these qualities, MSC expressing modified forms of the TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (Apo2L/TRAIL) are being developed to complement more conventional radiation and chemotherapy.
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