Exploring the molecular and cellular basis of metastasis

Primary tumors are seldom lethal—most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis. Cancer cells mutate and spread to far-flung regions of the body, where they are difficult to investigate and eradicate. Too little is known about the molecular and cellular changes that drive metastasis. Under the aegis of the Ludwig Center for Molecular Oncology, we are identifying the genes that encourage metastastic spread and allow cancer cells to survive and thrive in disparate locations. We are also devising methods to identify and visualize sites of metastasis earlier in the disease. Armed with this knowledge, we aim to combat metastasis before it begins and destroy cancer cells wherever they may hide.

Featured Faculty: Jacqueline Lees

Learn more about the work of the Lees lab to understand how proteins and pathways are mutated in cancer—and how they hope to make advances in detecting and hopefully treating osteosarcoma.

Participating Intramural Faculty

Angelika Amon

Frank Gertler

Richard Hynes

Jacqueline Lees

Phillip Sharp

Forest M. White

Omer H. Yilmaz

To browse recent publications by these and other Koch Institute faculty members, visit Progress, our monthly research review.