MICROTOPOLOGY OF LOCAL PERFUSION, OXYGENATION, METABOLIC AND ENERGETIC STATUS, AND INTERSTITIAL pH IN MALIGNANT TUMORS: TECHNIQUES AND CHARACTERIZATION
Summary. The metabolic microenvironment of a solid tumor can markedly influence its biological behavior in terms of tumor progression and response to treatment. Assessment of tumor perfusion, oxygenation, metabolic and energetic status, and pH is therefore paramount if the impact of the micromilieu on malignant progression is to be characterized. One striking feature of these parameters however, is their heterogeneity, such that methods used to obtain global information on the pathophysiological status of malignancies may not be representative of the specific situation in tumor microareas. Instead, techniques are required with a high spatial resolution which enable correlation of the measured parameters with tumor histology. This report summarizes currently available methods which can be used to examine the microtopological distribution of relevant micromilieu factors, giving examples of where these methods have already been applied in the experimental situation and/or in the clinical setting.
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