Anchorage-Dependent Multicellular Aggregate Formation Induces CD44 High Cancer Stem Cell-Like Phenotypes in Adult T Cell Leukemia/Lymphoma Cells

  • Yukiko MiyatakeEmail author
  • Masanori Kasahara


Adult T cell leukemia/lymphoma (ATL) is a highly invasive and intractable T cell malignancy caused by human T cell leukemia virus-1 infection. Leukemia/lymphoma cells that have invaded the tissues exhibit a propensity for strong resistance to chemotherapy, presenting a major obstacle to the treatment of ATL patients. Therefore, understanding how tissue-infiltrating leukemia/lymphoma cells acquire intractable features is important for developing effective treatments for ATL patients. We have recently found that, when co-cultured with epithelial-like feeder cells, ATL cells form anchorage-dependent multicellular aggregates and that a fraction of aggregate-forming ATL cells acquire quiescent CD44 high cancer stem cell-like phenotypes. This observation suggests that the intractability of tissue-infiltrating ATL cells may be partly accounted for by the acquisition of cancer stem cell-like properties.


Adult T-cell leukemia Cancer stem cells CD44 Coculture Multicellular aggregates 



This work was supported in part by Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research from The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology of Japan (MEXT).

Competing Financial Interests

The authors declare no competing financial interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PathologyHokkaido University Graduate School of MedicineSapporoJapan

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