Advanced Topics in Cancer Biology

Module code: MB7004

The development and use of appropriate anti-cancer therapy rely on the accurate diagnosis of cancer. Therefore, it is important to be able to differentiate between normal and malignant tissue under the microscope. In the first practical of this module you will investigate the histology of tumours using Haemotoxylin and Eosin (H&E) staining and through the use of immunohistochemistry to assess alterations in protein expression and cellular localization in human tumour samples.

The ability of cancer cells to migrate from a primary site to other parts of the body (called metastasis) represents a major clinical problem. Metastasis involves cell migration, intravasation, transport through the lymphatic and circulatory system, extravasation and metastatic colonisation. To ensure continuous growth, the tumour must stimulate the development of new blood vessels (a process called angiogenesis) in order to obtain sufficient oxygen and nutrients. Some of the molecular components that regulate metastasis are - or have the potential to be - targets for cancer therapy.

In the second practical in this module, you will explore the migratory behaviour of normal and cancer cells using a variety of techniques such as wound healing assays and Boyden chamber assays.

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