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Pericytes: gatekeepers in tumour cell metastasis?

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Abstract

Tumour cells use two major routes to spread during metastasis, e.g. lymph vessels and blood vessels within or surrounding the primary tumour. The growth rate of the primary tumour often correlates with the quantity of new blood vessels that form within the tumour. However, qualitative abnormalities of the tumour vasculature profoundly affect the perfusion of the primary tumour and the escape of tumour cells into the circulation. In this paper, we review recent evidence for a novel role of the supporting mural cells in limiting blood-borne metastasis.

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Acknowledgements

We are grateful to Laura Mulcahy and Dr. Erik Sahai for proof reading and critical comments. H.G is supported by Cancer Research UK. H.S. acknowledges previous support from the Swedish Cancer Foundation. We wish to apologize to authors of important work not cited here for reasons of space limitation.

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Correspondence to Holger Gerhardt or Henrik Semb.

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Gerhardt, H., Semb, H. Pericytes: gatekeepers in tumour cell metastasis?. J Mol Med 86, 135–144 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00109-007-0258-2

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