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Brain tumor heterogeneity and progression are subject to complex interactions between tumor cells and their microenvironment. Glioblastoma and brain metastasis can contain 30-40% of tumor-associated macrophages, microglia, and astrocytes, affecting migration, proliferation, and apoptosis. Here, we analyzed interactions between glial cells and LN229 glioblastoma or A375 melanoma cells in the context of motility and cell-cell interactions in a 3D model. Furthermore, the effects of phytocannabinoids, cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabidiol (THC), or their co-application were analyzed. Co-culture of tumor cells with glial cells had little effect on 3D spheroid formation, while treatment with cannabinoids led to significantly larger spheroids. The addition of astrocytes blocked cannabinoid-induced effects. None of the interventions affected cell death. Furthermore, glial cell-conditioned media led to a significant slowdown in collective, but not single-cell migration speed. Taken together, glial cells in glioblastoma and brain metastasis micromilieu impact the tumor spheroid formation, cell spreading, and motility. Since the size of spheroid remained unaffected in glial cell tumor co-cultures, phytocannabinoids increased the size of spheroids without any effects on migration. This aspect might be of relevance since phytocannabinoids are frequently used in tumor therapy for side effects.


Urszula Hohmann, Christoph Walsleben, Chalid Ghadban, Frank Kirchhoff, Faramarz Dehghani, Tim Hohmann. Interaction of Glia Cells with Glioblastoma and Melanoma Cells under the Influence of Phytocannabinoids. Cells. 2022 Jan 03;11(1)

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PMID: 35011711

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