The presence of abnormal cells with malignant potential or neoplastic characteristics is a relatively common phenomenon. The interaction of these abnormal cells with their microenvironment is essential for tumor development, protection from the body's immune or defence mechanisms, later progression and the development of life-threatening or metastatic disease. The tumor microenvironment is a collective term that includes the tumor's surrounding and supportive stroma, the different effectors of the immune system, blood platelets, hormones and other humoral factors. A better understanding of the interplay between the tumor cells and its microenvironment can provide efficient tools for cancer management, as well as better prevention, screening and risk assessment protocols.
Keywords: hormones; immune; metastasis; platelets; regulation; stroma; tumor; tumor microenvironment.