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Jamming transitions in cancer

: Oswald, Linda; Grosser, Steffen; Smith, David M.; Käs, Josef A.

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Journal of Physics. D. Applied Physics 50 (2017), 48, Art. 483001, 17 pp.
ISSN: 0022-3727
ISSN: 1361-6463
Journal Article, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IZI ()
cancer; cell mechanic; cell migration; EMT; epithelial; jamming; metastasis

The traditional picture of tissues, where they are treated as liquids defined by properties such as surface tension or viscosity has been redefined during the last few decades by the more fundamental question: under which conditions do tissues display liquid-like or solid-like behaviour? As a result, basic concepts arising from the treatment of tissues as solid matter, such as cellular jamming and glassy tissues, have shifted into the current focus of biophysical research. Here, we review recent works examining the phase states of tissue with an emphasis on jamming transitions in cancer. When metastasis occurs, cells gain the ability to leave the primary tumour and infiltrate other parts of the body. Recent studies have shown that a linkage between an unjamming transition and tumour progression indeed exists, which could be of importance when designing surgery and treatment approaches for cancer patients.