gms | German Medical Science

56. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie e. V. (DGNC)
3èmes journées françaises de Neurochirurgie (SFNC)

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie e. V.
Société Française de Neurochirurgie

07. bis 11.05.2005, Strasbourg

Medulloblastoma invasiveness in cerebellar parenchyma assessed in vitro

Untersuchung der Invasivität von Medulloblastomen in Kleinhirn Parenchym in-vitro

Meeting Abstract

  • corresponding author C. Schichor - Neurochirurgische Klinik, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
  • C. Herbold - Neurochirurgische Klinik der Universität Würzburg
  • N. Höhlriegel - Neurochirurgische Klinik der Universität Würzburg
  • S. Kerkau - Neurochirurgische Klinik der Universität Würzburg
  • T. Pietsch - Institut für Neuropathologie der Universität Bonn
  • J.-C. Tonn - Neurochirurgische Klinik, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
  • R. Goldbrunner - Neurochirurgische Klinik, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie. Société Française de Neurochirurgie. 56. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Neurochirurgie e.V. (DGNC), 3èmes journées françaises de Neurochirurgie (SFNC). Strasbourg, 07.-11.05.2005. Düsseldorf, Köln: German Medical Science; 2005. Doc09.05.-15.03

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: May 4, 2005

© 2005 Schichor et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.




Medulloblastoma represents the most frequent malignant brain tumor of childhood. Its capacity to invade surrounding structures, especially brainstem is one of the most important limiting factors for survival. Experimentally, xenotransplanted cells gave rise to subcutaneous growth of tumors in some but not all medulloblastoma cell-lines. On specific extracellular matrix-proteins, medulloblastomas show few invasive characteristics compared to adult glioma invasion assays. The goal of our study was to evaluate the widely varying medulloblastoma invasion in cerebellar tissue in a new assay system in vitro.


As a matrix for invasion we used freshly prepared cerebellar parenchyma. Cut in 40µm – slices, it was fixed to a membrane only by mechanical manners, maintaining its structure without any chemical treatment for preservation. Spheroids of two established human medulloblastoma cell lines (MHH-Med 4, MEB-Med 8S), whose invasive potential in other assay systems is poor, were studied for their invasiveness into the brain-slice within 24 hours, as well as the optimal conditions for preservation of the slice. Vincristin, which blocks glioma cell motility, was used for negative controls.


Without any addition of chemoattractants to cause directional locomotion into the brain-slice, the medulloblastoma cells showed a strong adhesion to the cerebellar slice, as well as rapid, cluster-shaped invasion. Medulloblastoma cell invasion was inhibited in a dose dependent fashion by Vincristin, which validates this system for functional experiments. The invasive capacities of both cell-lines differed widely.


The newly developed invasion assay system provides reproducible means to investigate the varying invasive behavior of medulloblastomas. This is the first description of a medulloblastoma-specific in vitro invasion assay.