9th Annual Symposium
Physics of Cancer
Leipzig, Germany
September 24-26, 2018
Invited Talk
New peptide probes to map the tensional states of ECM fibers in tumour tissues
Viola Vogel
Laboratory of Applied Mechanobiology, Institute of Translational Medicine, Department for Health Sciences and Technology, ETH Zurich, CH-8093 Zürich, Switzerland
Contact:  | Website
Major transformations of extracellular matrix (ECM) composition, architecture as well as of its mechanical properties accompany inflammatory diseases and cancer progression. While considerable evidence has emerged in recent years that the stretching of ECM fibers can either activate or destroy molecular binding sites, little is known how this alters outside-in cell signaling. As the ECM acts as reservoir for a plethora of growth factors and cytokines, some of which bind to ECM fibers, gaining knowledge on the mechanical strain of ECM fibers in healthy and diseased tissue is thus urgently needed. To address this challenge, we have recently developed mechanosensitive peptide probes which specifically bind to relaxed, but not to stretched fibronectin fibers. Novel insights will be discussed that we obtained in a first set of tissues via spatial correlative assessments in relationship to other biomarkers. Recapitulating de novo tissue growth processes in microtissue platforms gave further insights into mechanisms by which ECM fiber tension might affect tissue growth processes and the fibroblast-to-myofibroblast transition.
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