Visualizing Vasculature: Uncovering Essential Proteins

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blood vessels on top of a protein matrix

Genevieve Abbruzzese, Jeffrey Kuhn, Thao Nguyen, Richard Hynes

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blood vessels on top of a protein matrix

Genevieve Abbruzzese, Jeffrey Kuhn, Thao Nguyen, Richard Hynes
Koch Institute at MIT

The vasculature, or circulatory system, carries blood throughout the body to deliver oxygen and nutrients to tissues.

The Hynes Lab uses the retina to study vascular development and identify new proteins that contribute to the network’s growth. Here, blood vessels (green) grow radially outward, guided by the underlying protein scaffold (red). At the edges, sprouting vessels receive signals from the surrounding proteins.

Because cancer cells also rely on vasculature for their growth and survival, the proteins uncovered could offer new pathways for anti-tumor intervention.