The investigation on the mechanisms that govern the development and progression of cancer is constantly swaying between "seed" and "soil". Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) makes no exception. Its natural history, including response to treatment and drug resistance, is determined both by causal and influential genes and by the relationships that leukemic cells entertain with their supportive microenvironments. Therefore dissecting the role of microenvironment may provide new strategies of diagnosis and treatment. CLL, though phenotypically homogeneous, is clinically heterogeneous and despite major therapeutic advances remains incurable. Conceivably the host of new non-genotoxic drugs that operate at the forefront between tumor cells and their milieu will modify the present therapeutic perspective by re-shaping the tumor cell/microenvironment cross talk.
Keywords: Chronic lymphocytic leukemia; Cytoskeleton; Microenviroment; Mouse models.
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