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Cancer Metastasis
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The first key event in the multi-step process of metastasis is the separation of tumor cells from the primary tumor and the dissemination into the surrounding tissue. Cells gain the ability to migrate and invade by altering their cytoskeletal organization, cell-cell-contacts, contacts with the extracellular matrix (ECM) and surrounding stroma. Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) is a transient dynamic program induced by different transcription factors TFs). EMT-TFs orchestrate tumor-promoting micro environmental changes, cancer cell stemness, and chemo resistance. The contribution of EMT programs to the metastatic cascade regarding breast cancer is supported by several publications. However, it is still under debate if an involvement of EMT programs is indispensable for creating an invasive phenotype. Therefore it is necessary to study cancer cell invasion with regards to EMT complexity.
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