Bone is a preferential site for cancer metastases, including multiple myeloma, prostate, and breast cancers.The composition of bone, especially the extracellular matrix (ECM), make it an attractive site for cancer cell colonization and survival. The bone ECM is composed of living cells embedded within a matrix composed of both organic and inorganic components. Among the organic components, type I collagen provides the tensile strength of bone. Inorganic components, including hydroxyapatite crystals, are an integral component of bone and provide bone with its rigidity. Under normal circumstances, two of the main cell types in bone, the osteoblasts and osteoclasts, help to maintain bone homeostasis and remodeling through cellular communication and response to biophysical signals from the ECM. However, under pathological conditions, including osteoporosis and cancer, bone remodeling is dysregulated. Once in the bone matrix, disseminated tumor cells utilize normal products of bone remodeling, such as collagen type I, to fuel cancer cell proliferation and lesion outgrowth. Models to study the complex interactions between the bone matrix and metastatic cancer cells are limited. Advances in understanding the interactions between the bone ECM and bone metastatic cancer cells are necessary in order to both regulate and prevent metastatic cancer cell growth in bone.
Kolb, Alexus D. and Bussard, Karen M., "The Bone Extracellular Matrix as an Ideal Milieu for Cancer Cell Metastases." (2019). Department of Cancer Biology Faculty Papers. Paper 157.
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