Mobile Cancer Factories

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Title: Mobile Cancer Factories
Description: Organoids are miniature versions of organs grown in the lab. Organoid culture systems offer a powerful platform for the development of targeted therapies and precision medicine by letting scientists easily create genetic or environmental changes (difficult or impossible in animal models or human patients) to identify networks of genes that control cellular behaviors that give way to tumors. This image shows an organoid that was grown from a single mammary stem cell. Researchers used this system to demonstrate how a single critical gene, called Sox10 (in blue), controls whether cells turn into dangerous mini "factories", rapidly churning out more copies and variants of themselves. The Sox10 gene allows cells to migrate and to take on characteristics of other cells (plasticity). In cancer cells, these features lead to metastasis and drug resistance. Inner keratin-8+ luminal cells (in green) are surrounded by peripheral keratin-14+ basal cells (in red).

This image was originally submitted as part of the 2016 NCI Cancer Close Up project and selected for exhibit.
Topics/Categories: Science and Technology -- Genetics
Type: Color, Photo (JPEG format)
Source: National Cancer Institute \ Salk Institute
Creator: Geoffrey Wahl, Christopher Dravis
Date Created: September 2015
Date Added: April 11, 2016
Reuse Restrictions: None - This image is in the public domain and can be freely reused. Please credit the source and, where possible, the creator listed above.