BioEngineers take a different view of cancer cells

May 20, 2013

Most cancer deaths are caused by metastatic tumors, which break free from the original cancer site and spread throughout the body. For that to happen, cancer cells must undergo many genetic and physical changes.

Many of those genetic changes have been studied extensively, but it has been more difficult to study the physical changes. Now, MIT researchers have developed a way to study three key physical properties of cancer cells — their mass, stiffness and friction — on a large scale.

Authors from the paper include lead author and MIT postdoc Sangwon Byun, grad student Josephine Shaw, MIT postdoc Sungmin Son; Stanford University postdoc Dario Amodei; MIT grad students Nathan Cermak, Joon Ho Kang and Vivian Hecht; former MIT postdoc Monte Winslow; Tyler Jacks, the David H. Koch Professor of Biology at MIT and director of the Koch Institute; and Parag Mallick, an assistant professor of radiology at Stanford.

The rest of the article is available on MIT Newsphoto courtesy of Sangwon Byun and Josephine Shaw

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