Identification of Novel Pro-Migratory, Cancer-Associated Genes Using Quantitative, Microscopy-Based Screening


Cell migration plays a critical role in numerous physiological processes, including embryonic development, inflammatory responses, wound healing, and angiogenesis, as well as in pathological states such as tumor invasion and metastasis.


Cell migration is a highly complex process, regulated by multiple genes, signaling pathways and external stimuli. To discover genes or pharmacological agents that can modulate the migratory activity of cells, screening strategies that enable the monitoring of diverse migratory parameters in a large number of samples are necessary.


A quantitative, high-throughput cell migration assay, was developed, based on a modified phagokinetic tracks (PKT) procedure. It was then applied for identifying novel pro-migratory genes in a cancer-related gene library.


Four novel genes derived from breast carcinoma related cDNA library were identified; whose over-expression induces major alteration in the migration of the stationary MCF7 cells.


This approach can serve for high throughput screening for novel ways to modulate cellular migration in pathological states such as tumor metastasis and invasion.

Contact person: Suha Naffar-Abu-Amara

Further Reading 
Naffar-Abu-Amara, S; Shay, T; Galun, M; Cohen, N; Isakoff, SJ; Kam, Z; Geiger, B (2008). Identification of novel pro-migratory, cancer-associated genes using quantitative, microscopy-based screening.  PLoS ONE. 3 (1).