12th Annual Symposium
Physics of Cancer
Leipzig, Germany
Aug 30 - Sept 1, 2021
Invited Talk
Tuning cell behavior through integrins and ECM rigidity
Johanna Ivaska
Turku Bioscience Center, University of Turku, Finland, Tykistökatu 6, FIN-20520 Turku, Finland
Contact:  | Website
Tissue homeostasis is dependent on the spatially controlled localization of specific cell types and the correct composition of the extracellular stroma. Integrin mediated adhesions, in conjunction with the actin cytoskeleton, allow cells to sense the stiffness of the surrounding extra-cellular matrix (ECM). Conversely, cells exert acto-myosin and integrin dependent forces to remodel and organize the surrounding ECM. In cancer, stiffening of the tumor stroma is an instrumental contributor to tumor progression. Tissue stiffness acts as a migration cue in durotaxis and supports cell proliferation in cancerous tissue. However, in vivo, disseminating cancer cells are likely to encounter a broad range of variable tissue rigidities and it remains poorly understood how mechanosensory inputs tune adhesion signaling over a range of rigidities to regulate cell migration, proliferation and cell fate decisions. I will describe our recent findings on the interrelationships between cell adhesion, actin cytoskeleton, cell motility and cancer progression and how these are modulated in cell type specific manner.
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