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Review
. 2014 Nov 1;92(1):43-54.
doi: 10.1016/j.bcp.2014.08.011. Epub 2014 Aug 25.

Metabolic Orchestration Between Cancer Cells and Tumor Microenvironment as a Co-Evolutionary Source of Chemoresistance in Ovarian Cancer: A Therapeutic Implication

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Review

Metabolic Orchestration Between Cancer Cells and Tumor Microenvironment as a Co-Evolutionary Source of Chemoresistance in Ovarian Cancer: A Therapeutic Implication

Dong Hoon Suh et al. Biochem Pharmacol. .

Abstract

Our group reported a significant association between hexokinase II overexpression and chemoresistance in ovarian cancer, suggesting that aerobic glycolysis in the so-called Warburg effect might contribute to cancer progression. However, a growing body of evidence indicates contradictory findings with regard to the Warburg effect, such as high mitochondrial activity in highly invasive tumors and low ATP contribution of glycolysis in ovarian cancer. As a solution for the dilemma of the Warburg effect, the "reverse Warburg effect" was proposed in which aerobic glycolysis might occur in the stromal compartment of the tumor rather than in the cancer cells, indicating that the glycolytic tumor stroma feed the cancer cells through a type of symbiotic relationship. The reverse Warburg effect acting on the relationship between cancer cells and cancer-associated fibroblasts has evolved into dynamic interplay between cancer cells and multiple tumor stromal compartments, including cancer-associated fibroblasts, the extracellular matrix, endothelial cells, mesenchymal stem cells, adipocytes, and tumor-associated macrophages. Peritoneal cavities including ascites and the omentum also form a unique environment that is highly receptive for carcinomatosis in the advanced stages of ovarian cancer. The complicated but ingeniously orchestrated stroma-mediated cancer metabolism in ovarian cancer provides great heterogeneity in tumors with chemoresistance, which makes the disease thus far difficult to cure by single stromal-targeting agents. This review will discuss the experimental and clinical evidence of the cross-talk between cancer cells and various components of tumor stroma in terms of heterogeneous chemoresistance with focal points for therapeutic intervention in ovarian cancer.

Keywords: Chemoresistance; Metabolism; Ovarian cancer; Tumor heterogeneity; Tumor microenvironments.

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