Mechanisms regulating glioma invasion

Cancer Lett. 2015 Jun 28;362(1):1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2015.03.015. Epub 2015 Mar 18.


Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most aggressive, deadliest, and most common brain malignancy in adults. Despite the advances made in surgical techniques, radiotherapy and chemotherapy, the median survival for GBM patients has remained at a mere 14 months. GBM poses several unique challenges to currently available treatments for the disease. For example, GBM cells have the propensity to aggressively infiltrate/invade into the normal brain tissues and along the vascular tracks, which prevents complete resection of all malignant cells and limits the effect of localized radiotherapy while sparing normal tissue. Although anti-angiogenic treatment exerts anti-edematic effect in GBM, unfortunately, tumors progress with acquired increased invasiveness. Therefore, it is an important task to gain a deeper understanding of the intrinsic and post-treatment invasive phenotypes of GBM in hopes that the gained knowledge would lead to novel GBM treatments that are more effective and less toxic. This review will give an overview of some of the signaling pathways that have been shown to positively and negatively regulate GBM invasion, including, the PI3K/Akt, Wnt, sonic hedgehog-GLI1, and microRNAs. The review will also discuss several approaches to cancer therapies potentially altering GBM invasiveness.

Keywords: Glioblastoma; Hedgehog; Invasion; PI3K; Wnt.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Brain Neoplasms / therapy
  • Glioblastoma / metabolism
  • Glioblastoma / pathology*
  • Glioblastoma / therapy
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness