Kirsten Pondman (UTwente, group Séverine LeGac) was awarded a Veni from NWO-TTW for her project: Circulating tumor cells: together we triumph, divided we fall
Cancer cells can travel through the body as clusters, with for example immune cells and/or platelets. These clusters (CTMs) may be better equipped to survive in the blood flow and cause cancer spreading (metastasis) compared to individual cancer cells (CTCs). Yet, their extreme rarity makes their study very challenging. Here, CTM models will be created, with well-defined compositions, to identify which of their characteristics increase their survival and ability to cause metastasis, using a blood vessel model. The generated new knowledge will be instrumental in developing new treatments targeting these CTMs to, subsequently, avoid spread of cancer.