A study on cell migration provides insights into the movement of cancer cells

November 21, 2013

Jordi Casanova, head of the "Morphogenesis in Drosophila" lab at IRB Barcelona and CSIC research professor, and Gaëlle Lebreton, postdoctoral fellow in the same group, have published a study performed using Drosophila melanogaster in the Journal of Cell Science. This work reveals that in a multiple movement, a single cell can act as the leader and can drag the rest with it. The scientists have studied the tracheal development of Drosophila in vivo and describe the morphological characteristics of the leading cell and provide molecular details about how it drives the movement.

"Cancer researchers are keen to know how cells are organized to achieve migration and to form new capillaries to feed an expanding cancerous tumor," explains Gaëlle Lebreton, first author of the article. "Our study gives new data about how angiogenesis might arise," comments the French scientist at IRB Barcelona. Angiogenesis or the formation of new blood vessels is a critical process in the context of cancer because it is one of the steps that mark the transformation of a benign tumour into a malignant one. The formation of new blood vessels involves the synchronized movements of groups of cells. In this regard, understanding how these groups work will open up new research lines on angiogenesis.

Over seven hours, the scientists tracked a group of seven cells that form one of the tracheal branches of the fly Drosophila melanogaster in its first hours of development. The leading cell is the only one that has receptors for the growth factor FGF. The FGF signal stimulates a cascade of reactions in this cell in order to generate sufficient energy and to turn it into the promoter of motility.

"This is a novel piece of work because we monitored the entire process in vivo and because it is the first time we have seen, in an experimental context, that a single cell can lead this multiple migration," says Casanova.

It is important to note that the development of trachea in the Drosophila fly is similar to that of bronchia in humans. Consequently, this development is also of biomedical interest in order to unravel the basic processes involved in the formation of new tissue.
-end-
Reference article:

Specification of leading and trailing cell features during collective migration in the Drosophila trachea Lebreton G, Casanova J.

Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona)

Related Cancer Articles from Brightsurf:

New blood cancer treatment works by selectively interfering with cancer cell signalling
University of Alberta scientists have identified the mechanism of action behind a new type of precision cancer drug for blood cancers that is set for human trials, according to research published in Nature Communications.

UCI researchers uncover cancer cell vulnerabilities; may lead to better cancer therapies
A new University of California, Irvine-led study reveals a protein responsible for genetic changes resulting in a variety of cancers, may also be the key to more effective, targeted cancer therapy.

Breast cancer treatment costs highest among young women with metastic cancer
In a fight for their lives, young women, age 18-44, spend double the amount of older women to survive metastatic breast cancer, according to a large statewide study by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Cancer mortality continues steady decline, driven by progress against lung cancer
The cancer death rate declined by 29% from 1991 to 2017, including a 2.2% drop from 2016 to 2017, the largest single-year drop in cancer mortality ever reported.

Stress in cervical cancer patients associated with higher risk of cancer-specific mortality
Psychological stress was associated with a higher risk of cancer-specific mortality in women diagnosed with cervical cancer.

Cancer-sniffing dogs 97% accurate in identifying lung cancer, according to study in JAOA
The next step will be to further fractionate the samples based on chemical and physical properties, presenting them back to the dogs until the specific biomarkers for each cancer are identified.

Moffitt Cancer Center researchers identify one way T cell function may fail in cancer
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers have discovered a mechanism by which one type of immune cell, CD8+ T cells, can become dysfunctional, impeding its ability to seek and kill cancer cells.

More cancer survivors, fewer cancer specialists point to challenge in meeting care needs
An aging population, a growing number of cancer survivors, and a projected shortage of cancer care providers will result in a challenge in delivering the care for cancer survivors in the United States if systemic changes are not made.

New cancer vaccine platform a potential tool for efficacious targeted cancer therapy
Researchers at the University of Helsinki have discovered a solution in the form of a cancer vaccine platform for improving the efficacy of oncolytic viruses used in cancer treatment.

American Cancer Society outlines blueprint for cancer control in the 21st century
The American Cancer Society is outlining its vision for cancer control in the decades ahead in a series of articles that forms the basis of a national cancer control plan.

Read More: Cancer News and Cancer Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.