, Volume 11, Issue 2, pp 151-163
Date: 15 Nov 2006

Probing the Microenvironment of Mammary Tumors Using Multiphoton Microscopy

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Abstract

Advances in optical imaging technologies that allow the subcellular resolution of undissected tissue have begun to offer new clues into the biology of development and disease. For cancer, such advances mean that the primary tumor is no longer a black box and that the disease can be studied throughout the metastatic cascade and not just as an endpoint. In this review we examine the advances in multiphoton imaging technology that have been used to define the microenvironment and its role in delineating the invasion and intravasation steps of metastasis inside living mammary tumors. Results show that the tumor microenvironment is a dynamic place where interactions between tumor cells, macrophages, blood vessels, and extracellular matrix fibers define the metastatic phenotype.

Figures are available in color format in the online version of the article.