A novel stem cell culture model of recurrent glioblastoma
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Glioblastoma (GBM) is the most common and aggressive primary brain tumor in adults with average disease relapse at 9 months and median survival rarely extending beyond 15 months. Brain tumor stem cells (BTSCs) have been implicated in not only initiating GBM but also conferring resistance to therapy. However, it is not clear whether the BTSC population that initiates tumor growth is also responsible for GBM recurrence. In this study, we have developed a novel in vitro treatment model to profile the evolution of primary treatment-naïve GBM BTSCs through chemoradiotherapy. We report that our in vitro model enriched for a CD15+/CD133- BTSC population, mirroring the phenotype of BTSCs in recurrent GBM. We also show that in vitro treatment increased stem cell gene expression as well as self-renewal capacity of primary GBMs. In addition, the chemoradiotherapy-refractory gene signature obtained from gene expression profiling identified a hyper-aggressive subtype of glioma. The delivery of in vitro chemoradiotherapy to primary GBM BTSCs models several aspects of recurrent GBM biology, and could be used as a discovery and drug-screening platform to uncover new biological drivers and therapeutic targets in GBM.
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