Metabolic Reprogramming of Cancer Associated Fibroblasts: The Slavery of Stromal Fibroblasts

Angelica Avagliano, Giuseppina Granato, Maria Rosaria Ruocco, Veronica Romano, Immacolata Belviso, Antonia Carfora, Stefania Montagnani, Alessandro Arcucci
BioMed Research International 2018, 2018: 6075403
Cancer associated fibroblasts (CAFs) are the main stromal cell type of solid tumour microenvironment and undergo an activation process associated with secretion of growth factors, cytokines, and paracrine interactions. One of the important features of solid tumours is the metabolic reprogramming that leads to changes of bioenergetics and biosynthesis in both tumour cells and CAFs. In particular, CAFs follow the evolution of tumour disease and acquire a catabolic phenotype: in tumour tissues, cancer cells and tumour microenvironment form a network where the crosstalk between cancer cells and CAFs is associated with cell metabolic reprogramming that contributes to CAFs activation, cancer growth, and progression and evasion from cancer therapies. In this regard, the study of CAFs metabolic reprogramming could contribute to better understand their activation process, the interaction between stroma, and cancer cells and could offer innovative tools for the development of new therapeutic strategies able to eradicate the protumorigenic activity of CAFs. Therefore, this review focuses on CAFs metabolic reprogramming associated with both differentiation process and cancer and stromal cells crosstalk. Finally, therapeutic responses and potential anticancer strategies targeting CAFs metabolic reprogramming are reviewed.

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