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BACKGROUND Stromal-epithelial interactions are of particular significance in breast tissue as misregulation of these interactions can promote tumorigenesis and invasion. Moreover, collagen-dense breast tissue increases the risk of breast carcinoma, although the relationship between collagen density and tumorigenesis is not well understood. As little is(More)
Subfailure damage in ligaments was evaluated macroscopically from a structural perspective (referring to the entire ligament as a structure) and microscopically from a cellular perspective. Freshly harvested rat medial collateral ligaments (MCLs) were used as a model in ex vivo experiments. Ligaments were preloaded with 0.1 N to establish a consistent point(More)
Cells generate mechanical force to organize the extracellular matrix (ECM) and drive important developmental and reparative processes. Likewise, tumor cells invading into three-dimensional (3D) matrices remodel the ECM microenvironment. Importantly, we previously reported a distinct radial reorganization of the collagen matrix surrounding tumors that(More)
Mammographically dense breast tissue is one of the greatest risk factors for developing breast carcinoma, yet the associated molecular mechanisms remain largely unknown. Importantly, regions of high breast density are associated with increased stromal collagen and epithelial cell content. We set out to determine whether increased collagen-matrix density, in(More)
Connective tissue mechanical behavior is primarily determined by the composition and organization of collagen. In ligaments and tendons, type I collagen is the principal structural element of the extracellular matrix, which acts to transmit force between bones or bone and muscle, respectively. Therefore, characterization of collagen fibril morphology and(More)
BACKGROUND Mammographically dense breast tissue is one of the greatest risk factors for developing breast carcinoma. Despite the strong clinical correlation, breast density has not been causally linked to tumorigenesis, largely because no animal model has existed for studying breast tissue density. Importantly, regions of high breast density are associated(More)
Evidence for the potent influence of stromal organization and function on invasion and metastasis of breast tumors is ever growing. We have performed a rigorous examination of the relationship of a tumor-associated collagen signature-3 (TACS-3) to the long-term survival rate of human patients. TACS-3 is characterized by bundles of straightened and aligned(More)
We hypothesize that blockade of the sympathetic nervous system degrades ligament. We tested this hypothesis in a rat medial collateral ligament (MCL) model. Fifteen animals were treated for 10 days with the sympathetic chemotoxin guanethidine using osmotic pumps, whereas 15 control rats received pumps containing saline. A reduction in plasma concentrations(More)
Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) is a central regulator of the focal adhesion, influencing cell proliferation, survival, and migration. Despite evidence demonstrating FAK overexpression in human cancer, its role in tumor initiation and progression is not well understood. Using Cre/LoxP technology to specifically knockout FAK in the mammary epithelium, we showed(More)