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BMC Cancer

, 11:504

BMC Cancer-s 10th anniversary special edition


The microenvironment within solid tumours can influence the metastatic dissemination of tumour cells, and recent evidence suggests that poorly oxygenated hypoxic cells in primary tumours can also affect the survival and proliferation of metastatic tumour cells in distant organs. Hypoxic tumour cells have been historically targeted during radiation therapy in attempts to improve loco-regional control rates of primary tumours since hypoxic cells are known to be resistant to ionizing radiation-induced DNA damage. There are, therefore, a number of therapeutic strategies to directly target hypoxic cells in primary and metastatic tumours, and several compounds are becoming available to functionally inhibit hypoxia-induced proteins that are known to promote metastasis. This mini-review summarizes several established and emerging experimental strategies to target hypoxic cells in primary tumours with potential clinical application to the treatment of patients with tumour metastases or patients at high risk of developing metastatic disease. Targeting hypoxic tumour cells to reduce metastatic disease represents an important advance in the way scientists and clinicians view the influence of tumour hypoxia on therapeutic outcome.


CAIXcarbonic anhydrase-9

CXCR4C-X-C chemokine receptor type-4

HIFhypoxia-inducible factor

LOXlysyl oxidase

PETpositron emission tomography

pO2partial pressure of oxygen

SDF-1αstromal cell-derived factor-1α


Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-1471-2407-11-504 contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Autor: Kevin L Bennewith - Shoukat Dedhar


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