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Ovarian cancer cells bully their way through tissue
Date:6/14/2011

sult. If the hole failed to form, the researchers knew that they'd discovered a critical player in the invasion process.

They identified three such playersintegrin, talin and myosin, which are all proteins known to play a role in cell movement. Integrin sticks out from the cancer cells and grabs hold of scaffolding surrounding the mesothelium. Myosin, which is a motor, pulls on integrin via talin. As a result, the protruding cancer cells gain traction and can now force mesothelial cells out of the way.

"The cancer cells act like bullies," says first author Marcin Iwanicki, a postdoctoral researcher in Brugge's lab. "Instead of relying on a sophisticated biochemical process to achieve their goal, they simply push mesothelial cells apart."

"Eventually, it might be possible to prevent or reverse the invasion process," says Brugge. "We hope that our work will inform such treatments in the future."


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Contact: David Cameron
communications@hms.harvard.edu
617-432-0442
Harvard Medical School
Source:Eurekalert

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