Author(s): Bleau AM, Hambardzumyan D, Ozawa T, Fomchenko EI, Huse JT,
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Abstract In normal brain, the side population (SP) phenotype is generated by ABC transporter activity and identifies stem cell and endothelial cell subpopulations by dye exclusion. By drug efflux, the ABCG2 transporter provides chemoresistance in stem cells and contributes to the blood brain barrier (BBB) when active in endothelial cells. We investigated the SP phenotype of mouse and human gliomas. In glioma endothelial cells, ABC transporter function is impaired, corresponding to disruption of the BBB in these tumors. By contrast, the SP phenotype is increased in nonendothelial cells that form neurospheres and are highly tumorigenic. In this cell population, Akt, but not its downstream target mTOR, regulates ABCG2 activity, and loss of PTEN increases the SP. This Akt-induced ABCG2 activation results from its transport to the plasma membrane. Temozolomide, the standard treatment of gliomas, although not an ABCG2 substrate, increases the SP in glioma cells, especially in cells missing PTEN.
This article was published in Cell Stem Cell
and referenced in Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy