6th Annual Symposium
Physics of Cancer
Leipzig, Germany
September 7-9, 2015
Invited Talk
Quantification of cell morphology changes during cancer progression.
Kristine Schauer
Institut Curie, 26, rue d´Ulm, 75248 Paris cedex 05, France
Contact:  | Website
The alteration of cell morphology is a hallmark of tumor cells. Although many genetic and epigenetic changes have been discovered, the induced intracellular morphology rearrangements are still a black box. Indeed, very little is known how the relative positioning between different intracellular compartments alters during cancer progression. Systematic studies on the organization and relative positioning of intracellular organelles are difficult, because, on the one hand, in vivo approaches are limited by the access of the samples and perturbation, and on the other hand, in vitro cultured cells display strong morphological cell-to-cell variations.
Our aim is to resolve which role internal cell architecture plays in health and cancer disease, using bladder cancer as a model. To better characterize morphological alterations during cancer progression at the single cell level we use a minimal cell culture system based on micropatterning in combination with quantitative imaging and probabilistic mapping of cell organelles. We have compared several phenotypically different bladder cancer cell lines that represent different stages of cancer progression as well as normal human urothelium as a control. We have identified major alterations in the positioning of intracellular organelles and the organization of the cytoskeleton that accompany cancer development. The knowledge of the architectural alterations at the single cell level found in cancer provides great potential to identify key biological processes underlying cancer pathogenesis, prognostic biomarkers, and rational design for more effective therapeutic strategies. Moreover, they are important to better comprehend biophysical measurements of single cell properties.
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