The mission of the UW Carbone Cancer Center (UWCCC) Tumor Microenvironment (TM) Scientific Program is to investigate how tumor cells interact with various extracellular cues and how these extracellular cues affect tumor formation, growth, progression and ultimately metastasis.
Tumor Microenvironment is an important emerging area. Publications are growing exponentially and the NCI has several initiatives, including the Tumor Microenvironment Network. This group is supported by the presence at UW-Madison of many outstanding investigators whose research is focused on cell-extracellular matrix (ECM) interactions, ECM structure and function, cell-cell adhesions, growth factor and paracrine signaling between tumor and stroma, immune cell trafficking into tumors, tumor angiogenesis and invasion and metastasis. The TM Program is clinically important because the tumor microenvironment is at the crux of metastasis and a better understanding of the mechanisms by which the microenvironment impacts tumor progression is likely to identify new ways to stratify patients and new approaches to therapy.