Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

Exosomes trigger tumour neovascularisation and and subsequent escape from chemotherapy

Olga Piskareva, Molecular & Cellular Therapeutics. Keywords: cancer, neuroscience, drug resistance, angiogenesis, exosomes.

The acquisition of multidrug resistance by cancer cells involves multiple genetic pathways and is a major impediment to the successful treatment of many forms of this disease. This is particularly true for neuroblastoma, a highly heterogeneous tumour accounting for 15% of all paediatric cancer deaths. Disease recurrence and progression is very common for many neuroblastoma patients in spite of intensive multimodal therapy. Increasing evidence suggests that cancer cells are communicate with its microenvironment through exosomes. Exosomes are enriched with bioactive proteins and nucleic acids and can re-programme the cell machinery of recipient cells giving advantage for tumour expansion. The aim of this project is to ascertain the contribution of exosomes derived from drug resistant cancer cells to promote tumour neovascularisation and subsequent escape from chemotherapy.  Technical skills to be acquired: the basic principles of cell culture, cytotoxicity tests, RNA/DNA transfection, RNA/DNA/protein isolation, RT-qPCR, immunodetection, flow cytometry, microscopy. Animal models. Bioinformatics and data analysis.   

Mentors Olga Piskareva