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Bone marrow cells migrate to tumors and can slow their growth
Date:10/7/2011

Philadelphia, PA, October 6, 2011 Bone marrow-derived cells (BMDCs) participate in the growth and spread of tumors of the breast, brain, lung, and stomach. To examine the role of BMDCs, researchers developed a mouse model that could be used to track the migration of these cells while tumors formed and expanded. Their results, published in the November issue of The American Journal of Pathology, strongly suggest that more effective cancer treatments may be developed by exploiting the mechanism by which bone marrow cells migrate to tumors and retard their proliferation.

"Our results provide an excellent in vivo experimental model where the temporal dynamics of tumor-infiltrating BMDCs may be monitored in an immunocompetent host and novel therapies targeting BMDCs for the inhibition of tumor progression may be investigated," commented lead investigator Wafik S. El-Deiry, MD, PhD, Professor and Chief, Hematology/Oncology Division at the Penn State Hershey Medical Center and Associate Director for Translational Research at the Penn State Hershey Cancer Institute. "In the future, it may be possible to use specific identified tumor-infiltrating BMDCs to deliver therapeutic cargo."

A first group of mice expressing a fluorescence gene served as donors of the bone marrow cells. A second group of mice, whose marrow had been destroyed by radiation, were injected with the donated fluorescent bone marrow. The transplanted bone marrow cells were allowed to proliferate for 8 weeks. Then, colon cancer cells were injected into the same mice and tumors formed over the next 3 weeks.

Monitoring tumor growth by optical imaging, researchers found that the tumors contained numerous types of BMDCs. Notably they also found that tumor growth is reduced in animals that received the bone marrow transplants, compared with untransplanted host mice.

According to the authors, cancer has long been viewed as a disease in which transformed cells grow an
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Contact: David Sampson
ajpmedia@elsevier.com
215-239-3171
Elsevier Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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