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Endothelial Cells and HIF transcription factors regulating lung pre-disposition for metastatic events

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The vasculature, as an extraordinarily versatile organ, is not just the preferred transport system for most compounds and cells, but also has a broad and sophisticated ability to adjust to internal and external cues, to respond and produce signals, recruit and interact differently with different cell types, and function both as a barrier and a selective filter. The properties of blood capillaries are organ- and context-specific, and the regulation of those functional differences are not yet fully understood or characterized, even in pathological contexts. I am interested in studying tumor dispersion (metastatic disease) from the perspective of the host physiological pre-disposition as opposed to the cancer aggressiveness: patients diagnosed with the same cancer type at similar stage often progress very differently, and secondary cancer is the chief cause of mortality. I have found that metabolism regulated by HIF transcription factors in endothelial cells significantly affect the incidence of lung metastases, and will be discussing which parameters and environmental challenges could contribute to alter organ-predisposition, vascular compliance/resistance to circulating tumor cells, and the circumstantial intricacies of cell behavior that can help or hinder tumor dissemination to distant sites.

This talk is part of the Foster Talks series.

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