Frontiers in Bioscience-Scholar (FBS) is published by IMR Press from Volume 13 Issue 1 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.
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Academic Editor: Manuel Verdugo
Malignant gliomas, particularly glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), account for the majority of brain tumors. Their incidence is increasing world wide and they are incurable. Although a transient response to therapy is observed, tumor recurrence is inevitable and occurs within tissue that has received cytotoxic therapy. This suggests that a subpopulation of resistant cells is responsible for tumor regrowth. The treatment of GBMs represents a daunting challenge to clinicians due principally to the lack of effective therapeutic options. One explanation for this is the marked cellular and genetic heterogeneity within and across these types of tumors. Unravelling the cellular composition of gliomas and describing cell lineage relationships are essential for therapeutic breakthroughs. The recent proposal that a small percentage of cells with stem cells characteristics are responsible for tumor initiation and growth has sparked an interest in applying approaches used to study somatic stem cells toward an understanding of the cellular elements responsible for cancer progression and recurrence. To outline the relevance of these findings is the purpose of this review.