Open Access
The role of the tumor microenvironment in hematological malignancies and implication for therapy
Jianbiao Zhou1,Katja Mauerer1,Lucia Farina1,John G Gribben1
Department of Medical Oncology, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA
DOI: 10.2741/1642 Volume 10 Issue 2, pp.1581-1596
Published: 01 May 2005
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Tumor growth and metastasis: molecular signaling and therapy)

The tumor microenvironment is essential for tumor cell proliferation, angiogenesis, invasion, and metastasis by providing survival signals and a sanctuary site for tumor cells, by secretion of growth factors, pro-angiogenesis factors and direct adhesion molecule interactions. Our knowledge of microenvironment is only now beginning to unfold. In this review, the morphological and molecular characteristics of microenvironment in various hematological malignancies including acute lymphoblastic leukemia, acute myeloid leukemia, myelodysplastic syndrome, lymphoma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia, and multiple myeloma are summarized and the molecular mechanisms of microenvironment contributing to leukemogenesis are elucidated. We also aim to discuss the encouraging preclinical and clinical trials for treatment of hematological malignancies by targeting the tumor microenvironment. Further understanding of the signal transduction pathways between tumor cells and microenvironment will lead to the development of novel targeted therapeutic agents and more effective combination of current drugs for fighting hematological malignancies.

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Jianbiao Zhou, Katja Mauerer, Lucia Farina, John G Gribben. The role of the tumor microenvironment in hematological malignancies and implication for therapy. Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark. 2005. 10(2); 1581-1596.