Mechanobiology of Cancer and Wounds

We develop and apply cell mechanobiology approaches for cancer diagnosis and prognosis and for wound prevention and healing. Our main focus is on cancer research, understanding metastasis and developing patient-specific mechanobiology approaches to predict the likelihood for metastasis formation. We are currently working with cell lines and tumors from patients with breast and pancreatic cancers and also adolescent’s Ewing’s Sarcomas. In parallel, in the context of wounds, we are developing mechanobiology based tools and approaches to prevent wound formation and accelerate wound healing.

We study the effects of substrate stiffness on cell motility and spreading, in relation to metastasis formation and wound closure. We use mechanics to identify mechanisms of force application, reveal inherent mechanical differences between cancer and benign, and evaluate treatments for prevention of cancer metastasis.

We perform experiments, develop analysis tools including advanced image analysis, and perform finite element modeling of our systems.

Main approaches:

  • Traction force microscopy in 2D and 3D to evaluate cell-substrate interactions
  • Particle tracking microrheology
  • Rheology and bio-rheology
  • Real-time, high-resolution fluorescence microscopy with combined time-lapse.
  • Various cell biology techniques (immunofluorescence, viability and proliferation, etc.).
  • Image processing for high-resolution imaging in 2D and 3D
  • Finite element analysis and modeling

You can read more about us in Daphne’s Blog: