Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Biomechanical cell properties highly relevant for cancer research

12.10.2010
Biomechanical changes of cells are a prerequisite for tumor growth and invasion of cancer cells. These new research finding in the field of biophysics of cancer cells were published recently by the group of Prof. Dr. Josef A. Käs together with Prof. Dr. Dr. Michael Höckel (both University of Leipzig, Germany) in an invited article in Nature Physics. The publication is sponsored by the National Cancer Institute in Washington DC.

Based on material’s properties of (cancer) cells the physicist Prof. Dr. Josef A. Käs as well as the medical scientist Prof. Dr. Dr. Michael Höckel came to the following results which could give rise to considerably changes in cancer therapies:

The research team found out that the biomechanical properties of tumor cells promote their growth as well as their invasion within the human body. Three biomechanical properties are in the focus of these observations: First, the outer cytoskeleton, the so called actin cortex of cancer cells is much softer and supports fast growth and cell division.

“We could evidence such behavior in a first clinical study, for example with Prof. Thorsten Remmerbach for oral cancer” claims the physicist. The second striking biomechanical property of cancer cells affects the tumor growth against the normal tissue surrounding the tumor: “Obviously, the cells do not have to stiffen linearly to grow against the environment. We can solve the apparent contradiction by considering that the soft actin cortex gets softer but nevertheless, it can resist high pressures exerted from the surroundings.

In return, elements of the cytoskeleton are pronounced which results in an
overall stiffening of the tumor.” The third biomechanical property considers the ability of metastasizing cancer cells to overcome boundaries between different tissues. “Normal cells usually favor to stay together,” Käs explains. Metastasizing cells can overcome the boundaries by very sensitive reaction on mechanical impulses and contraction. Thus, cancer cells quickly mix with other cells. Together with the ability of self-contraction these cancer cells can leave the primary tumor and metastasize.
The self-contraction is the central observation which is presented in “Nature” to the specialised public and researchers. From these and so far obtained scientific results new approached for diagnostic and therapy can be derived.

In reverse to the cell properties mentioned above, the researchers from Leipzig investigate agents which influence these properties to obtain new possibilities to suppress growth and invasion of tumor cells: “It is still a long way to go. However, we have new approaches for that,” Käs claims. His research is supported by the BMBF project AGESCREEN and EXPRIMAGE, as well as by the DFG Initiative of Excellence within the graduate school BuildMoNa.

The investigation of changes in physical, i.e. material, properties of cells during progression of cancer is an emerging field in physics redefining medical physics and now redefines itself based on material science. The University of Leipzig plays a leading role in this new field.

Meanwhile, the new findings were employed to apply for a patent with the title “Method for diagnosis and/or prognosis of cancer diseases by analysis of the mechanical properties of tumor cells.”

Event announcement:
The minisymposium „Physics of Cancer“ organized by the graduate school BuildMoNa, which is located at the physics and chemistry department of the University of Leipzig, will take place Oct. 25-26, 2010. Thus, world’s leading investigators in this field have accepted the invitation, such as Prof. Roland Eils, German Cancer Research Center Heidelberg (DKFZ), Prof. Francoise Brochard, Institut Curie (Paris), Prof. W. Losert, U.S. National Cancer Institut, as well as Prof. Dr. Dr. Michael Höckel, Medical Department, Universität Leipzig, and Josef A. Käs, Department of Physics and Earth Science, University of Leipzig.

The minisymposium will be opend by the major of Leipzig Burkhard Jung on Oct. 25th, 9 h at the University of Leipzig, Seminargebäude, Room 420, Universitätsstr. 1.

More information:
Prof. Dr. Josef A. Käs
Telefon: +49 341 97-32470
E-Mail: jkaes@physik.uni-leipzig.de

Dr. Manuela Rutsatz | Universität Leipzig
Further information:
http://www.uni-leipzig.de/~pwm

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Navigational view of the brain thanks to powerful X-rays
18.10.2017 | Georgia Institute of Technology

nachricht Separating methane and CO2 will become more efficient
18.10.2017 | KU Leuven

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Osaka university researchers make the slipperiest surfaces adhesive

18.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

Space radiation won't stop NASA's human exploration

18.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Los Alamos researchers and supercomputers help interpret the latest LIGO findings

18.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>