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  • Posted: 12/18/2012
NCI Cancer Center News

UC Berkeley scientists suggest that to revert breast cancer cells, give them the squeeze

Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory have put the squeeze -- literally -- on malignant mammary cells to guide them back into a normal growth pattern. The findings show... for the first time that mechanical forces alone can revert and stop the out-of-control growth of cancer cells. This change happens even though the genetic mutations responsible for malignancy remain, setting up a nature-versus-nurture battle in determining a cell's fate. NCI helped fund this research through its Physical Science-Oncology program.

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Among the research institutions NCI funds across the United States, it currently designates 67 as Cancer Centers. Largely based in research universities, these facilities are home to many of the NCI-supported scientists who conduct a wide range of intense, laboratory research into cancer’s origins and development. The Cancer Centers Program also focuses on trans-disciplinary research, including population science and clinical research. The centers’ research results are often at the forefront of studies in the cancer field.