Bone marrow as a metastatic niche for disseminated tumor cells from solid tumors

Bonekey Rep. 2015 May 20:4:689. doi: 10.1038/bonekey.2015.57. eCollection 2015.


Bone marrow is a heterogeneous organ containing diverse cell types, and it is a preferred metastatic site for several solid tumors such as breast and prostate cancer. Recently, it has been shown that bone metastatic cancer cells interact with the bone marrow microenvironment to survive and grow, and thus this microenvironment is referred to as the 'metastatic niche'. Once cancer cells spread to distant organs such as bone, the prognosis for the patient is generally poor. There is an urgent need to establish a greater understanding of the mechanisms whereby the bone marrow niche influences bone metastasis. Here we discuss insights into the contribution of the bone marrow 'metastatic niche' to progression of bone metastatic disease, with a particular focus on cells of hematopoietic and mesenchymal origin.

Publication types

  • Review