Eicosanoids are a family of bioactive lipids that play diverse roles in the normal physiology of the brain, including neuronal signaling, synaptic plasticity, and regulation of cerebral blood flow. In the brain, eicosanoids are primarily derived from arachidonic acid, which is released from membrane phospholipids in response to various stimuli. Prostaglandins (PGs) and leukotrienes (LTs) are the major classes of eicosanoids produced in the brain, and they act through specific receptors to modulate various physiological and pathological processes. Dysregulation of eicosanoids has been implicated in the development and progression of brain tumors, including glioblastoma (GBM), meningioma, and medulloblastoma. Eicosanoids have been shown to promote tumor cell proliferation, migration, invasion, angiogenesis, and resistance to therapy. Particularly, PGE2 promotes GBM cell survival and resistance to chemotherapy. Understanding the role of eicosanoids in brain tumors can inform the development of diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers, as well as therapeutic strategies that target eicosanoid pathways. Cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 and 5-lipoxygenase (LOX) inhibitors have been shown to reduce the growth and invasiveness of GBM cells. Moreover, eicosanoids have immunomodulatory effects that can impact the immune response to brain tumors. Understanding the role of eicosanoids in the immune response to brain tumors can inform the development of immunotherapy approaches for these tumors. Overall, the complex role of eicosanoids in the brain underscores the importance of further research to elucidate their functions in normal physiology and disease, and highlights the potential for developing novel therapeutic approaches that target eicosanoid pathways in brain tumors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number188957
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Reviews on Cancer
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2023


  • Cyclooxygenase
  • Eicosanoids
  • Glioblastoma
  • Leukotriene
  • Lipoxygenase
  • Prostaglandin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


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