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Solid tumor metastasis often involves detachment of epithelial carcinoma cells into the vasculature or lymphatics. However, most studies of cytoskeletal rearrangement in solid tumors focus on attached cells. In this study, we report for the first time that human breast tumor cells produce unique tubulin-based protrusions when detached from extracellular(More)
Obscurins (∼70 - 870 kDa), encoded by the single OBSCN gene, are cytoskeletal proteins originally identified in striated muscles with structural and regulatory roles. Recently, analysis of 13,023 genes in breast and colorectal cancers identified OBSCN as one of the most frequently mutated genes, implicating it in cancer formation. Herein we studied the(More)
Epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is associated with increased breast tumor metastasis; however, the specific mechanisms by which EMT promotes metastasis remain somewhat unclear. Despite the importance of cytoskeletal dynamics during both EMT and metastasis, very few current studies examine the cytoskeleton of detached and circulating tumor cells.(More)
Loss of PTEN tumor suppressor enhances metastatic risk in breast cancer, although the underlying mechanisms are poorly defined. We report that homozygous deletion of PTEN in mammary epithelial cells induces tubulin-based microtentacles (McTNs) that facilitate cell reattachment and homotypic aggregation. Treatment with contractility-modulating drugs showed(More)
The molecular mechanism(s) linking tumorigenesis and morphological alterations in the nucleolus are presently coming into focus. The nucleolus is the cellular organelle in which the formation of ribosomal subunits occurs. Ribosomal biogenesis occurs through the transcription of ribosomal RNA (rRNA), rRNA processing and production of ribosomal proteins. An(More)
Cell migration on planar surfaces is driven by cycles of actin protrusion, integrin-mediated adhesion, and myosin-mediated contraction; however, this mechanism may not accurately describe movement in 3-dimensional (3D) space. By subjecting cells to restrictive 3D environments, we demonstrate that physical confinement constitutes a biophysical stimulus that(More)
Selectins promote metastasis by mediating specific interactions between selectin ligands on tumor cells and selectin-expressing host cells in the microvasculature. Using affinity chromatography in conjunction with tandem mass spectrometry and bioinformatics tools, we identified mucin 16 (MUC16) as a novel selectin ligand expressed by metastatic pancreatic(More)
Cell migration is crucial for both physiological and pathological processes. Current in vitro cell motility assays suffer from various drawbacks, including insufficient temporal and/or optical resolution, or the failure to include a controlled chemotactic stimulus. Here, we address these limitations with a migration chamber that utilizes a self-sustaining(More)
Selectins (L-, E- and P-selectin) are calcium-dependent transmembrane glycoproteins that are expressed on the surface of circulating leukocytes, activated platelets, and inflamed endothelial cells. Selectins bind predominantly to sialofucosylated glycoproteins and glycolipids (E-selectin only) present on the surface of apposing cells, and mediate transient(More)
The cytoskeletal organization of detached and circulating tumor cells (CTCs) is currently not well defined and may provide potential targets for new therapies to limit metastatic tumor spread. In vivo, CTCs reattach in distant tissues by a mechanism that is tubulin-dependent and suppressed by polymerized actin. The cytoskeletal mechanisms that promote(More)