Nuclear factor-κB in glioblastoma: insights into regulators and targeted therapy

Neuro Oncol. 2016 Mar;18(3):329-39. doi: 10.1093/neuonc/nov265. Epub 2015 Nov 2.


Nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) is a ubiquitous transcription factor that regulates multiple aspects of cancer formation, growth, and treatment response. Glioblastoma (GBM), the most common primary malignant tumor of the central nervous system, is characterized by molecular heterogeneity, resistance to therapy, and high NF-κB activity. In this review, we examine the mechanisms by which oncogenic pathways active in GBM impinge on the NF-κB system, discuss the role of NF-κB signaling in regulating the phenotypic properties that promote GBM and, finally, review the components of the NF-κB pathway that have been targeted for treatment in both preclinical studies and clinical trials. While a direct role for NF-κB in gliomagenesis has not been reported, the importance of this transcription factor in the overall malignant phenotype suggests that more rational and specific targeting of NF-κB-dependent pathways can make a significant contribution to the management of GBM.

Keywords: NF-κB; glioblastoma; glioma; inhibitor.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Brain Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Brain Neoplasms / pathology
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects*
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm / drug effects
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic / drug effects*
  • Glioblastoma / drug therapy*
  • Glioblastoma / pathology
  • Humans
  • NF-kappa B / drug effects*
  • NF-kappa B / metabolism*


  • NF-kappa B