Endothelial cells

Related projects 


Vascular co-option

García-Gómez P and Valiente M. (2020). Tumor vascularization. Elsevier.

Link to Publication


Vascular co-option in brain metastasis.

García-Gómez P and Valiente M. Angiogenesis. (2020).

Link to Publication


Serpins promote cancer cell survival and vascular co-option in brain metastasis.

Valiente M et al. Cell. (2014).

Link to Publication


Pericyte-like spreading by disseminated cancer cells activates YAP and MRTF for metastatic colonization.

Er E et al. Nature Cell Biology. (2018).

Link to Publication


STAR protocol on brain slices

Lucía Zhu, Lauritz Miarka, Patricia Baena, María Perea-García, Manuel Valiente. ScienceDirect (2023)

Link to publication

Metastatic cells (green) co-opting pre-existing capillaries (red, endothelial cells; white, basal lamina) in the brain during the initial stages during brain colonization.

In the brain (and elsewhere) the initiation of metastasis relies on the ability of cancer cells to interact with pre-existing vessels. This perivascular niche is exploited by metastasis initiating cells to favor organ colonization in a process termed vascular co-option. Why is vascular co-option required for the initiation of metastasis is unknown and which are the molecular mediators of such process poorly described.

We extensively used organotypic brain cultures to study the process of vascular co-option both to understand the influence of the physical interaction on co-opting cancer cells as well as on co-opted endothelial cells. Such a unique but also reproducible phenomena among models of brain metastasis is being dissected ultrastructurally with electron microscopy as well as interrogated with unprecedented detail at the molecular level. We have expanded the research tools available to study vascular co-option by using multicolor reporter time-lapse video-microscopy, specific AAVs targeting endothelial cells as well as GEMM that could help us to target specific genes in this compartment of the microenvironment.

We envision that exploiting vascular co-option is a unique opportunity to develop innovative strategie to prevent metastasis from happening.