Characterization of stem-like cells in a new astroblastoma cell line

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Abstract

Cell lines established from tumors are the most commonly used models in cancer research, and their use in recent years has enabled a greater understanding of the biology of cancer and the means to develop effective treatment strategies. Astroblastomas are uncommon neuroepithelial tumors of glial origin, predominantly affecting young people, mainly teenagers and children, predominantly females. To date, only a single study has reported that astroblastomas contain a large number of neural stem-like cells, which had only a partial proliferation capacity and differentiation. Our objective was to establish an astroblastoma cell line to investigate the presence of astroblastic cells and cancer stem-like cells. The migratory and invasion abilities of the cells were quantified with invasion and migration assays and compared to a glioblastoma cell line. The presence of stem cells was detected with surface-marker analysis by using flow cytometry, and measuring the differentiation ability with a differentiation assay and the self-renewal capacity with a sphere-forming assay. These characteristics may determine whether this novel cell line is a model for astroblastomas that may have stem-cell characteristics. With this novel cell line, scientists can investigate the molecular pathways underlying astroblastomas and develop new therapeutic strategies for patients with these tumors.

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