The organ microenvironment and cancer metastasis


  • Isaiah J. Fidler

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Cancer Biology, Unit 173
      The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center
      1515 Holcombe Boulevard, Houston, Texas 77030, USA
      Tel: +1 713 792 8577, Fax: +1 713 792 8747
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Abstract Primary neoplasms are biologically heterogeneous and the process of metastasis consists of a series of sequential, selective steps that few cells can complete. The outcome of cancer metastasis depends on multiple interactions between metastatic cells and homeostatic mechanisms that are unique to one or another organ microenvironment. The specific organ microenvironment determines the extent of cancer cell proliferation, angiogenesis, invasion, and survival. Therapy of metastasis should therefore be targeted not only against tumor cells, but also against the host factors that contribute to and support the progressive growth and survival of metastatic cancer cells.