Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Despite medical progress in the treatment of the primary tumor, most patients suffer and die from metastases at distant locations, such as bone. In contrast to most soft tissue metastases, bone metastases frequently lead to fractures, pain and a poor life quality.
Once established, bone metastases represent a point of no return and are rarely curable. They are even also regarded as a new source for systemic relapse. A better mechanistic understanding of this critical step of tumor progression is essential to target bone metastases, independent of the type of primary tumor.
The key steps of bone metastasis, including the initial colonization of bone by tumor cells and the early interaction with bone cells need to be better understood.