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BBB seminar: Olivier De Wever

The tumor environment controls cancer cell invasion: implication of myofibroblasts

Olivier De Wever
Laboratory of Experimental Cancer Research, University Hospital Ghent, Belgium

Tissue integrity is maintained by the stroma in normal physiology. However, tissue invasion is driven by the stroma in cancer. Myofibroblasts (also called cancer-associated fibroblasts) are important components of the tumor stroma. The origin of myofibroblasts remains controversial although fibroblasts and bone marrow-derived precursors are considered to be the main progenitor cells. Myofibroblast reactions also occur in fibrosis, therefore we wonder whether noncancerous myofibroblasts have different characteristics and different origins as compared to tumor-associated myofibroblasts. The mutual interaction between cancer cells and myofibroblasts is dependent on multiple invasive growth promoting factors (through direct cell-cell contacts and paracrine signals).

Host : Donald Gullberg <donald.gullberg@biomed.uib.no>, Department of Biomedicine