Prof Laura Machesky

University of Glasgow

Mechanosensing and metabolic demands in cancer cell migration

Cancer cells are highly adaptable to different environments and are under constant selection for this plasticity. A tumour is a place of unbalanced forces and loss of the normal cues that promote epithelial homeostasis. We have found that pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma cells are mechanosensitive and respond to the stiffness of their environment during migration and invasion. Different stiffness also places different energetic demands on the cells and they adapt by changing their metabolism. We recently identified the creatine-phosphgen shuttle for ATP recycling as an important contributor to invasive migration. I will discuss our work on mechanosensing in pancreatic cancer and how the cytoskeleton and the metabolic machinery cooperate to promote cancer invasiveness.

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