To avoid artefacts introduced by culturing cells for extended periods of time, it is crucial to use low-passage patient-derived tumour cells. The ability to enrich, isolate and assay sub-populations of cells that behave as cancer stem cells (CSCs) from these primary cell lines is essential before performing characterisations such as gene-expression profiling. We have isolated cells from glioblastomas which show characteristics of CSCs. Although glioblastomas contain only a relatively small amount of putative CSCs, these cells express many genes which seem to be worthy targets for future therapies.
Please note: an Erratum has been published for this article ecancer 6 249 (2012)