Infoscience

Journal article

Emerging paradigms and questions on pro-angiogenic bone marrow-derived myelomonocytic cells

Cancer-related inflammation has emerged in recent years as a major event contributing to tumor angiogenesis, tumor progression and metastasis formation. Bone marrow-derived and inflammatory cells promote tumor angiogenesis by providing endothelial progenitor cells that differentiate into mature endothelial cells, and by secreting pro-angiogenic factors and remodeling the extracellular matrix to stimulate angiogenesis though paracrine mechanisms. Several bone marrow-derived myelonomocytic cells, including monocytes and macrophages, have been identified and characterized by several laboratories in recent years. While the central role of these cells in promoting tumor angiogenesis, tumor progression and metastasis is nowadays well established, many questions remain open and new ones are emerging. These include the relationship between their phenotype and function, the mechanisms of pro-angiogenic programming, their contribution to resistance to anti-angiogenic treatments and to metastasis and their potential clinical use as biomarkers of angiogenesis and anti-angiogenic therapies. Here, we will review phenotypical and functional aspects of bone marrow-derived myelonomocytic cells and discuss some of the current outstanding questions.

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