Identification of the molecular and cellular changes in tumor-stroma interactions that govern tumor dormancy, growth and metastases​

Although dormant tumors are highly prevalent within the human population, the underlying mechanisms are still mostly unknown. We set to shed light on the mechanism underlying the tumor dormancy fundamental cancer biology phenomenon. A better molecular understanding of tumor dormancy and the availability of dormancy markers and therapeutic targets will most likely change our perception of tumor progression and, consequently, the way we diagnose and treat the disease. Our findings have led to the discovery of novel tumor dormancy-associated markers and targets and to the development of dormancy-promoting nano-therapies. This project is the basis for an ERC consolidator award granted to me in 2014-2019, a recent ERC Advanced award and an ISF grant for which Prof. Satchi-Fainaro received the Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Founders Award for “the Discovery of new molecular mechanisms and targets that would lead to new therapeutic approaches”. A similar approach was taken while investigating the mechanisms responsible for long-term survivors versus short-term survivors of pancreatic cancer (PDAC) patients.

Mcherry-labeled melanoma brain metastases (red) surrounded by tumor stroma (green).

Related publications:

  1. Tiram G, et al., (Satchi-Fainaro R) Identification of Dormancy-Associated MicroRNAs for the Design of Osteosarcoma-Targeted Dendritic Polyglycerol Nanopolyplexes, ACS Nano 10(2): 2028-2045 (2016). [PDF][PubMed]
  2. Ferber S*, Tiram G*, et al., (Satchi-Fainaro R), Co-targeting the tumor endothelium and P-selectin-expressing glioblastoma cells leads to a remarkable therapeutic outcome. eLife, 6 pii: e25281(2017).  [PDF] [PubMed]
  3. Tiram G*, Ferber S*, et al., (Satchi-Fainaro R), Reverting the molecular fingerprint of tumor dormancy as a therapeutic strategy for glioblastoma, FASEB J, 32 (11), 5835-5850 (2018). [PDF] [PubMed
  4. Gibori H, et al., (Satchi-Fainaro R), Amphiphilic nanocarrier-induced modulation of PLK1 and miR-34a leads to improved therapeutic response in pancreatic cancer, Nature Communications, Jan 2;9(1):16 (2018). [PDF] [PubMed]
  5. Yeini E, et al., (Satchi-Fainaro R)P-selectin inhibition alters microglia immunophenotype and blocks glioblastoma progressionNature Communications, Mar 26;12(1):1912 (2021). [PDF][PubMed]

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