Karen A. Beningo, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology in WSU's College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and resident of Plymouth, Mich., has found that the continuous restructuring of the extracellular matrix that upholds the weight of a tumor is one of the reasons highly invasive, malignant tumors are mechanically able to spread to other parts of the body. Beningo's study was recently published in PLoS ONE.
"This study has identified a novel physical parameter and a new conceptual framework in which to assess the process of invasion, not just of cancer cells but other invasive cell types as well," said Beningo.
Beningo simulated the tugging and pulling forces by embedding magnetic microbeads in the collagen matrix of a three-dimensional, cell-based assay. This way, she was able to examine the physical mechanisms "without the complication of secreted biochemical factors," she said.
"Surprisingly, we found that cancer cells were two to four times more likely to invade if the matrix was magnetically stimulated than if the culture was not stimulated," said Beningo.
She also found that less invasive tumors were not as stimulated by the tugging and pulling forces of the extracellular matrix as highly invasive tumors. Moreover, the absence of fibronectin, a component of the extracellular matrix, and cofilin, a cellular protein, removed the tumor's sensitivity to the mechanical "come hither" stimulus.
"We can conclusively state that fibronectin and cofilin are required for this mechanical response," said Beningo.
Beningo is working toward defining the mechanism of mechanically enhanced invasion and hopes to identify therapeutic targets.
"If we can prevent the invasive movement of cancer cells from the primary tumor, a large battle in the war on cancer will have been won," she said.
Financial support for the study was provided by Wayne State University.
Wayne State University is one of the nation's pre-eminent public research universities in an urban setting. Through its multidisciplinary approach to research and education, and its ongoing collaboration with government, industry and other institutions, the university seeks to enhance economic growth and improve the quality of life in the city of Detroit, state of Michigan and throughout the world. For more information about research at Wayne State University, visit http://www.research.wayne.edu.
Julie O'Connor | EurekAlert!
Newly designed molecule binds nitrogen
23.02.2018 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg
Atomic Design by Water
23.02.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung GmbH
A newly developed laser technology has enabled physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (jointly run by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics) to generate attosecond bursts of high-energy photons of unprecedented intensity. This has made it possible to observe the interaction of multiple photons in a single such pulse with electrons in the inner orbital shell of an atom.
In order to observe the ultrafast electron motion in the inner shells of atoms with short light pulses, the pulses must not only be ultrashort, but very...
A group of researchers led by Andrea Cavalleri at the Max Planck Institute for Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) in Hamburg has demonstrated a new method enabling precise measurements of the interatomic forces that hold crystalline solids together. The paper Probing the Interatomic Potential of Solids by Strong-Field Nonlinear Phononics, published online in Nature, explains how a terahertz-frequency laser pulse can drive very large deformations of the crystal.
By measuring the highly unusual atomic trajectories under extreme electromagnetic transients, the MPSD group could reconstruct how rigid the atomic bonds are...
Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...
For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.
In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...
Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale
Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...
15.02.2018 | Event News
13.02.2018 | Event News
12.02.2018 | Event News
23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
23.02.2018 | Health and Medicine
23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy