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Bone Marrow Stromal Cells Regulate Caspase 3 Activity In Leukemic Cells During Chemotherapy.

J. Fortney, W. Zhao, S. Wenger, L. Gibson
Published 2001 · Medicine

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The interaction between leukemic cells and stromal cells of the bone marrow microenvironment has been shown to enhance leukemic cell survival during exposure to chemotherapeutic agents. In the current study we investigated whether association of B lineage acute lymphoblastic leukemic cells with human bone marrow stromal cells altered caspase activation during chemotherapy treatment. Following treatment with Ara-C or VP-16 in vitro, caspase 3 activity in leukemic cells was consistently reduced by co-culture of leukemic cells with human bone marrow stromal cell layers. These observations suggest that the protective effect of the bone marrow microenvironment on leukemic cells may be due, in part, to regulation of caspase 3 activity.
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