Signaling Determinants of Glioma Cell Invasion
Adv Exp Med Biol
© 2020, Springer Nature Switzerland AG. Tumor cell invasiveness is a critical challenge in the clinical management of glioma patients. In addition, there is accumulating evidence that current therapeutic modalities, including anti-angiogenic therapy and radiotherapy, can enhance glioma invasiveness. Glioma cell invasion is stimulated by both autocrine and paracrine factors that act on a large array of cell surface-bound receptors. Key signaling elements that mediate receptor-initiated signaling in the regulation of glioblastoma invasion are Rho family GTPases, including Rac, RhoA and Cdc42. These GTPases regulate cell morphology and actin dynamics and stimulate cell squeezing through the narrow extracellular spaces that are typical of the brain parenchyma. Transient attachment of cells to the extracellular matrix is also necessary for glioblastoma cell invasion. Interactions with extracellular matrix components are mediated by integrins that initiate diverse intracellular signalling pathways. Key signaling elements stimulated by integrins include PI3K, Akt, mTOR and MAP kinases. In order to detach from the tumor mass, glioma cells secrete proteolytic enzymes that cleave cell surface adhesion molecules, including CD44 and L1. Key proteases produced by glioma cells include uPA, ADAMs and MMPs. Increased understanding of the molecular mechanisms that control glioma cell invasion has led to the identification of molecular targets for therapeutic intervention in this devastating disease.
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