Our limited understanding of how metastasis begins makes finding ways to stop it hugely challenging. The article I chose discusses a new study that was done that may provide more insight into this.
The researchers at the University of California discovered how the surrounding environment of a tumor can cause cancer cells to metastasize. To understand this, you first have to understand how metastatic cancer occurs, which is when a cancer cell breaks away from a primary tumor and moves to another area of the body usually but not limited to the bones, liver, or the lungs. In their study, they built a 3-D collagen matrix, which gave them the ability to get an in depth look at the migration activity of various types of human cancers. By doing this the researchers found that a condense environment caused the cancer cells to activate a distinct set of genes, of a “gene module” which they later named collagen-induced network phenotype.
This article captured my attention because cancer is a huge thing in our world and it is taking many people’s lives. Therefore, the better we understand these tumors and how they are metastasizing, the better chance we have at finding a cure, or finding a better road to recovery for those that suffer from it.