Receptor Seminar: Actin-based motility in cancer invasion and metastasis


August 30, 2018    
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


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Prof. Laura Machesky, The Beatson Institute, Glasgow, UK

Host: Jeroen Pouwels (
If you would like to meet Prof. Machesky on 30.8. to discuss your newest exciting data, please contact the host.


Prof. Machesky´s lab ( aims to understand the control and mechanisms of actin assembly in various normal and cancer cells with the hope to understand fundamental aspects of cell movement. Besides using cell culture, her lab employs several clinically relevant cancer models, mostly in mice, and she collaborates with many other research groups. She has made several seminal discoveries in the field, as evident from her publication list (see below for some of her recent papers) and honors. She did her PhD in the lab of the legendary Prof. Pollard in The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, where, among other things, she was (one of) the first to report the Arp2/3 complex. After having had her lab for 8 years at the University of Birmingham, she moved to the Beatson in 2007 and has been there ever since.

Selected publications

Morris HT, Fort L, Spence HJ, Patel R, Vincent DF, Park JH, Snapper SB, Carey FA, Sansom OJ, Machesky LM. Loss of N-WASP drives early progression in an Apc model of intestinal tumourigenesis. J Pathol 2018; 245: 337-48 doi: 10.1002/path.5086

Giampazolias E, Zunino B, Dhayade S, Bock F, Cloix C, Cao K, Roca A, Lopez J, Ichim G, Proics E, Rubio-Patino C, Fort L, Yatim N, Woodham E, Orozco S, Taraborrelli L, Peltzer N, Lecis D, Machesky L, Walczak H et al. Mitochondrial permeabilization engages NF-kappaB-dependent anti-tumour activity under caspase deficiency. Nat Cell Biol 2017; 19: 1116-29

Reid SE, Kay EJ, Neilson LJ, Henze AT, Serneels J, McGhee EJ, Dhayade S, Nixon C, Mackey JB, Santi A, Swaminathan K, Athineos D, Papalazarou V, Patella F, Roman-Fernandez A, ElMaghloob Y, Hernandez-Fernaud JR, Adams RH, Ismail S, Bryant DM et al. Tumor matrix stiffness promotes metastatic cancer cell interaction with the endothelium. EMBO J 2017; 36: 2373-89

Garcia E, Ragazzini C, Yu XZ, Cuesta-Garcia E, de la Serna JB, Zech T, Sarrio D, Machesky LM, Anton IM. WIP and WICH/WIRE co-ordinately control invadopodium formation and maturation in human breast cancer cell invasion. Sci Rep 6: 23590, 2016

Rainero E, Howe JD, Caswell PT, Jamieson NB, Anderson K, Critchley DR, Machesky L, Norman JC. Ligand-Occupied Integrin Internalization Links Nutrient Signaling to Invasive Migration. Cell Rep 2015. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2014.12.037. Epub 2015 Jan 15

Li A, Morton JP, Ma Y, Karim SA, Zhou Y, Faller WJ, Woodham EF, Morris HT, Stevenson RP, Juin A, Jamieson NB, MacKay CJ, Carter CR, Leung HY, Yamashiro S, Blyth K, Sansom OJ, Machesky LM. Fascin is regulated by slug, promotes progression of pancreatic cancer in mice, and is associated with patient outcomes. Gastroenterology 146: 1386-96 e1-17, 2014

Li A, Ma Y, Yu X, Mort RL, Lindsay CR, Stevenson D, Strathdee D, Insall RH, Chernoff J, Snapper SB, Jackson IJ, Larue L, Sansom OJ, Machesky LM. Rac1 Drives Melanoblast Organization during Mouse Development by Orchestrating Pseudopod- Driven Motility and Cell-Cycle Progression. Dev Cell 21: 722- 34, 2011

Zech T, Calaminus SDJ, Caswell PT, Spence HJ, Carnell MJ, Insall RH, Norman JC, Machesky LM. The Arp2/3 activator WASH regulates alpha-5 beta-1 integrin mediated invasive migration. J Cell Sci 124(Pt 22): 3753-9, 2011

Li A, Dawson JC, Forero-Vargas M, Spence HJ, Yu X, Konig I, Anderson K, Machesky LM. The actin-bundling protein fascin stabilizes actin in invadopodia and potentiates protrusive invasion. Curr Biol 20: 339-45, 2010