Proinflammatory-activated glioma cells induce a switch in microglial polarization and activation status, from a predominant M2b phenotype to a mixture of M1 and M2a/B polarized cells

Lucia Lisi, Egidio Stigliano, Libero Lauriola, Pierluigi Navarra, Cinzia Dello Russo*

*Autore corrispondente per questo lavoro

Risultato della ricerca: Contributo in rivistaArticolo in rivista

45 Citazioni (Scopus)


Malignant gliomas are primary brain tumors characterized by morphological and genetic complexities, aswell as diffuse infiltration into normal brain parenchyma. Within gliomas, microglia/ macrophages represent the largest tumor-infiltrating cell population, contributing by at least one-third to the total tumor mass. Bi-directional interactions between glioma cells and microglia may therefore play an important role on tumor growth and biology. In the present study, we have characterized the influence of glioma-soluble factors on microglial function, comparing the effects of media harvested under basal conditions with those of media obtained after inducing a pro-inflammatory activation state in glioma cells. We found that microglial cells undergo a different pattern of activation depending on the stimulus; in the presence of activated glioma-derived factors, i.e. a condition mimicking the late stage of pathology, microglia presents as a mixture of polarization phenotypes (M1 and M2a/b), with up-regulation of iNOS (inducible nitric oxide synthase), ARG (arginase) and IL (interleukine)-10. At variance, microglia exposed to basal glioma-derived factors, i.e. a condition resembling the early stage of pathology, shows a more specific pattern of activation, with increased M2b polarization status and upregulation of IL-10 only. As far as viability and cell proliferation are concerned, both LI-CM [LPS (lipopolysaccharide)- IFNγ (interferon γ) conditioned media] and C-CM (controlconditioned media) induce similar effects on microglial morphology. Finally, in human glioma tissue obtained from surgical resection of patients with IV grade glioblastoma, we detected a significant amount of CD68 positive cells, which is a marker of macrophage/microglial phagocytic activity, suggesting that in vitro findings presented here might have a relevance in the human pathology as well. © 2014 The Author(s).
Lingua originaleEnglish
pagine (da-a)171-183
Numero di pagine13
RivistaASN Neuro
Stato di pubblicazionePubblicato - 2014


  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Antigens, CD
  • Antigens, Differentiation, Myelomonocytic
  • Arginase
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Cerebral Cortex
  • Culture Media, Conditioned
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Glioma
  • Humans
  • IL-10
  • Interferon-gamma
  • Lipopolysaccharides
  • Medicine (all)
  • Microglia
  • Microglial polarization
  • NOS
  • Neuroglia
  • Neurology (clinical)
  • Neuroscience (all)
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase Type II
  • Phenotype
  • Rats
  • Time Factors
  • Up-Regulation
  • mTOR


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