Research ArticleCancer

The IDH-TAU-EGFR triad defines the neovascular landscape of diffuse gliomas

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Science Translational Medicine  22 Jan 2020:
Vol. 12, Issue 527, eaax1501
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.aax1501

The positive side of TAU

Gliomas, brain tumors originating in glial cells, are classified according to histologic as well as genetic features. Mutations in the IDH1/2 genes are associated with more favorable prognosis, whereas mutations in EGFR are characteristic of aggressive tumors. How these genes affect the microenvironment is not completely clear. Now, Gargini et al. show that TAU protein, classically associated with neurodegenerative disorders, is increased in less aggressive tumors. TAU inhibited the transition toward an aggressive phenotype by blocking EGFR activation. Mutated EGFR was no longer sensitive to TAU inhibition, possibly explaining the aggressive phenotype associated with EGFR mutations. The results suggest that TAU might play a main role in determining glioma aggressiveness.

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