Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Fibroblasts contribute to melanoma tumor growth

Date:
January 9, 2012
Source:
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute
Summary:
Fibroblasts, cells that play a role in the structural framework of tissues, play an apparent role in melanoma tumor growth. Fibroblasts also contribute to melanoma drug resistance and may also facilitate the "flare" response when a tumor's metabolism is enhanced following a patient being removed from a targeted therapy, said researchers.

Fibroblasts, cells that play a role in the structural framework of tissues, play an apparent role in melanoma tumor growth. Fibroblasts also contribute to melanoma drug resistance and may also facilitate the "flare" response when a tumor's metabolism is enhanced following a patient being removed from a targeted therapy, said researchers at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Fla.

Alexander R. Anderson, Ph.D., co-director of Integrative Mathematical Oncology at Moffitt, and Moffitt Comprehensive Melanoma Research Center member Keiran S. Smalley, Ph.D., along with colleagues from the Wistar Institute in Philadelphia, investigated the role of fibroblasts in melanoma progression and published their findings in a recent issue of Molecular Pharmaceutics.

"A role for fibroblasts in cancer progression has long been suspected," explained Anderson, who works with mathematical models of cancer to investigate tumor cell- microenvironment interactions. "In this study, we used an integrated mathematical and experimental approach to investigate whether melanoma cells recruit, activate and stimulate fibroblasts to deposit certain proteins known to be pro-survival for melanoma cells."

Fibroblasts are the most common of connective tissues, and they function to synthesize the "extra cellular matrix" of cells and collagen, the structural framework -- also called "stroma" -- for tissues.

The researchers knew that fibroblasts were drawn to cancer cells and that they became activated by cancer cells. They also knew that different cancer cell lines have varying capabilities for recruiting and stimulating fibroblasts. An expectation has been that aggressive cancers stimulate fibroblasts more than do less aggressive cancers.

When they investigated the relationship between fibroblasts and tumors using mathematical models, the research team came up with some unexpected findings.

Anderson and Smalley expected the fibroblast-derived "extra cellular matrix" that supports the tumor structure to have "direct effects on tumor behavior." However, once they ran their theoretical models they came up with a number of unexpected conclusions with potentially far-reaching implications about drug resistance and tumor growth.

"Our finding that the fibroblast population might facilitate the "flare response" -- a period during which a tumor has enhanced metabolism and increases it progression trajectory after patients are removed from targeted therapy -- was a surprise," said Smalley, whose research aims at developing new therapies for melanoma and getting them into clinical practice.

The researchers knew that a targeted therapy would kill only the tumor population, not the fibroblasts in the tumor structure. However, the finding that fibroblasts contribute to melanoma drug resistance was unexpected.

"Targeted therapies may actually hasten tumor progression when they are stopped due to resistance to the targeted drug," said Smalley. "We found in our models that fibroblasts appear to facilitate the flare response after targeted therapy ends."

Their conclusions about the relationship between fibroblasts and cancer tumors were not predicted or expected, but revealed though the use of mathematical models.

"If these conclusions are confirmed experimentally, we may gain important new insights into how drug resistance can be managed clinically," concluded Anderson.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Edward H. Flach, Vito W. Rebecca, Meenhard Herlyn, Keiran S. M. Smalley, Alexander R. A. Anderson. Fibroblasts Contribute to Melanoma Tumor Growth and Drug Resistance. Molecular Pharmaceutics, 2011; 8 (6): 2039 DOI: 10.1021/mp200421k

Cite This Page:

H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute. "Fibroblasts contribute to melanoma tumor growth." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 January 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120105131643.htm>.
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute. (2012, January 9). Fibroblasts contribute to melanoma tumor growth. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120105131643.htm
H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute. "Fibroblasts contribute to melanoma tumor growth." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120105131643.htm (accessed July 25, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, July 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

New Painkiller Designed To Discourage Abuse: Will It Work?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) The FDA approved Targiniq ER on Wednesday, a painkiller designed to keep users from abusing it. Like any new medication, however, it has doubters. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Doctor At Forefront Of Fighting Ebola Outbreak Gets Ebola

Newsy (July 24, 2014) Sheik Umar Khan has treated many of the people infected in the Ebola outbreak, and now he's become one of them. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

Condemned Man's US Execution Takes Nearly Two Hours

AFP (July 24, 2014) America's death penalty debate raged Thursday after it took nearly two hours for Arizona to execute a prisoner who lost a Supreme Court battle challenging the experimental lethal drug cocktail. Duration: 00:55 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Can Watching TV Make You Feel Like A Failure?

Newsy (July 24, 2014) A study by German researchers claims watching TV while you're stressed out can make you feel guilty and like a failure. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

    Health News

      Environment News

        Technology News



          Save/Print:
          Share:

          Free Subscriptions


          Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

          Get Social & Mobile


          Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

          Have Feedback?


          Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
          Mobile: iPhone Android Web
          Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
          Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
          Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins