Inhibition of vessel growth (angiogenesis) in tumors
The Ludwig-Maximilians-University (LMU) Munich
Center for Drug Research, Chair of Pharmaceutical Biology (Prof. Angelika Vollmar)
The Center for Drug Research covers all research areas around the development of novel drug – from chemical synthesis to innovative formulations. At the Chair of Pharmaceutical Biology (Prof. Dr. Angelika Vollmar) we investigate the pharmaceutical potential of natural compounds, be it of plant, animal or microbial origin.
Our main focus lies on tumor biology, with tumor angiogenesis (Prof. Dr. Stefan Zahler) as a central topic. Inhibiting the vessel growth in tumors in order to “starve” the malignancy is an old therapeutic concept, which has led to some clinical success, but still has its limits: due to evasive strategies of the tumors and to development of resistances we are still in need of novel therapeutic targets and inhibitors of angiogenesis. Therefore, not only try to get a better academic understanding of the angiogenesis process, but also screen novel inhibitors. More complex angiogenesis assays, like the tube formation assay, are image based and tedious to evaluate by hand.
Therefore they often are of limited use for screening purposes. The WimTube module overcomes this problem: it enables a robust rational evaluation of tube formation assays, and allows us to use this assay in a medium throughput screening approach.
In addition to the highly reproducible analysis, we also get valuable morphological information, which has to date not been used in classical evaluation routines.
Cancer studies using multifunctional nanoparticles
Department of Biology, Faculty of Science and Letters
Our main scientific interest is to combine biology and nanotechnology, meeting in cancer
studies using multifunctional nanoparticles. Wimasis enables us to measure both in vitro
scratch assay and in-ovo CAM assay by giving results in a shorter time and more standardized
manner. Initial and final scratch sizes are determined using the WimScratch analysis tool and
the difference between the two is used to determine migration distance using ratio of scratch
area to cell covered area.
We also frequently use CAM model in angiogenesis studies. Instead of using the macroscopic
scoring method, thanks to WimCAM we can reliably measure many parameters such as vesseldensity, total vessel network length, total branching points, total nets, and segment properties,
hidden details in the images obtained after the nanomaterials-biological system interaction in
CAM assay, thus we can make comparisons between these measurements in a short time. It
also allows seeing measurements on the processed image after all these analyzes and makes
you evaluate measurement quality. By this way, we cannot only save time but also get more
reliable morphological information than classical methods.
As it is known, this is crucial for a better understanding of the relationship between
cells/tissues and nano-sized structures and for making way for successful clinical applications.
Thanks to Wimasis’ online tools, it is now possible to make more informative analyzes about
interactions between nanomaterials and biological systems.