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Biomedicines 2018, 6(1), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/biomedicines6010022

Targeting Leukemia Stem Cells in the Bone Marrow Niche

1
Division of Oncology and Center for Childhood Cancer Research, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA
2
Department of Internal Medicine I, University Hospital Carl Gustav Carus, Technische Universität Dresden, 01069 Dresden, Germany
3
John van Geest Cancer Research Centre, Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham NG11 8NS, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 8 January 2018 / Revised: 6 February 2018 / Accepted: 17 February 2018 / Published: 21 February 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Stem Cells and Cancer Therapeutics)
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Abstract

The bone marrow (BM) niche encompasses multiple cells of mesenchymal and hematopoietic origin and represents a unique microenvironment that is poised to maintain hematopoietic stem cells. In addition to its role as a primary lymphoid organ through the support of lymphoid development, the BM hosts various mature lymphoid cell types, including naïve T cells, memory T cells and plasma cells, as well as mature myeloid elements such as monocyte/macrophages and neutrophils, all of which are crucially important to control leukemia initiation and progression. The BM niche provides an attractive milieu for tumor cell colonization given its ability to provide signals which accelerate tumor cell proliferation and facilitate tumor cell survival. Cancer stem cells (CSCs) share phenotypic and functional features with normal counterparts from the tissue of origin of the tumor and can self-renew, differentiate and initiate tumor formation. CSCs possess a distinct immunological profile compared with the bulk population of tumor cells and have evolved complex strategies to suppress immune responses through multiple mechanisms, including the release of soluble factors and the over-expression of molecules implicated in cancer immune evasion. This chapter discusses the latest advancements in understanding of the immunological BM niche and highlights current and future immunotherapeutic strategies to target leukemia CSCs and overcome therapeutic resistance in the clinic. View Full-Text
Keywords: leukemia stem cell; microenvironment; immune biomarker; immunotherapy; immune checkpoints; bone marrow; prognosis leukemia stem cell; microenvironment; immune biomarker; immunotherapy; immune checkpoints; bone marrow; prognosis
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
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Tasian, S.K.; Bornhäuser, M.; Rutella, S. Targeting Leukemia Stem Cells in the Bone Marrow Niche. Biomedicines 2018, 6, 22.

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