Glioblastoma hijacks neuronal mechanisms for brain invasion.

Paper: Cell
Author: Dr. med. Dr. rer. nat. Varun Venkataramani
Institution: Department of Neurology, Unversity Clinic Heidelberg

Project description:

Glioblastoma are incurable brain tumors characterised by their diffuse invasion and colonization of the entire brain. Another hallmark of these intractable cancers is their molecular and cellular heterogeneity.
In this study, novel methodologies were established to overlay the role of previously unknown role of molecular cell states with their biological function. Suprisingly, it could be seen that neuronal-like cell states are associated with invasiveness of tumor cells. Furthermore, the subpopulation of glioblastoma cells showed patterns of invasion that were resembling those of neurons during developments. Lastly, it could be seen that neuronal activity drives glioblastoma cell invasion. Taken together, three neuronal mechanisms of invasion could be uncovered paving the way for novel clinical-translational therapeutic strategies.


Venkataramani, V., Yang, Y., Schubert, M.C., Reyhan, E., Tetzlaff, S.K., Wissmann, N., Botz, M., Soyka, S.J., Beretta, C.A., Pramatarov, R.L., et al. (2022). Glioblastoma hijacks neuronal mechanisms for brain invasion. Cell 185, 2899-2917 e2831.


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Anne Asschenfeldt
Anne Asschenfeldt
Scientific Funding: Ongoing Project Funding and Fellowships