Baek Gil Kim

Baek Gil Kim

I. Research Interest

# Interplay between invasive cancer cells and tumor microenvironment for breast cancer metastasis

  • Breast cancer is one of the most common female cancers and known to metastasize to brain.  It is acknowledged that brain prevents the entering of substances in the blood stream by blood-brain barrier (BBB) and only tiny materials can across the BBB.  In terms of size, cancer cells are too large to penetrate the BBB.  However, 30% of all women with metastatic breast cancer develop brain tumors.  Recently, many studies have suggested that the reciprocal interaction between cancer cells and environment is important for cancer metastasis.  Therefore, it is plausible that tumor microenvironment is involved in breast cancer brain metastasis.  Our research is to understand the role of Interface Zone in breast cancer brain metastasis.

# Previous findings on tumor microenvironment\

  • Laminin-332-rich tumor microenvironment of invasive breast cancer – Fibrosis is normally observed around the tumor burden of breast cancer, and it tends to be denser in invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC) than ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS).  Considering that alteration in TME is likely to precede tumor invasion, the fibrosis around IDC may be the right place to study TME alteration on tissue.  In our previous study, we found that invasive breast cancer can induce Interface fibroblast (InF), a myofibroblast, from a non-tumoral epithelial cell via EMT, which forms laminin-332-rich tumor microenvironment to guide tumor progression.
Am J Pathol. 2011 January; 178(1): 373–381.
Am J Pathol. 2011 January; 178(1): 373–381.
  • Anoikis-resistant phenotype of interface fibroblast in invasive breast cancer – Although development of anoikis-resistant myofibroblasts during tissue remodeling is known to be associated with tumor invasion, the mechanism by which myofibroblasts become resistant to anoikis is unknown.  Laminin-332 is upregulated in the fibrosis around invasive ductal carcinoma (IDC), and promotes cell survival through binding to integrins.  It is, therefore, plausible that invasive breast cancer cells confer an anoikis-resistant phenotype on Interface fibroblast (InF) by upregulating laminin-332 expression during tissue remodeling.  We demonstrated that invasive breast cancer cells induce laminin-332 upregulation and integrin β4 neoexpression in InF to confer an anoikis-resistant phenotype.
Breast Cancer Res. 2012; 14(3): R88.
Breast Cancer Res. 2012; 14(3): R88.

II. Presentations

– January 20 – 23, 2013 Sandiego USA

“Invasive breast cancer amplifies lymphangiogenic signals in tumor microenvironment through integrin beta4 expressing cancer-associated fibroblasts”

An AACR Special Conference on Tumor invasion and metastasis

May 30 – June1, 2012 Seoul, Korea

“Invasive breast cancer represses anoikis and aggregation of myofibroblast via laminin-332 upregulation and integrin β4 neoexpression”

2012 Korean Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (KSBMB) Annual Meeting

Mar 18, 2011 Daejeon Korea (Oral presentation)

“Laminin-332-rich tumor microenvironment for tumor invasion in the interface zone of breast cancer”

An society of KSBMB for the research of Cancer Microenvironment

2011 Suzhou China (Oral presentation)

“Epithelial-mesenchymal transition at the margins: A new concept of the tumor-imcroenvironment interface as a dynamic tissue zone vital for tumor progression”

Jame Watson Symposium on Cancer / April 6-11, 2010 / Cold Spring Harbor Conference Asia

Jul 20 – 22, 2011 Edinburgh UK

“Laminn-332-rich tumor microenvironment for tumor invasion in the interface zone of breast cancer”

BioProcessing, Biologics & Biotherapeutics 2011

Sep 12 – 15, 2010 Philadelphia, USA

“A new therapeutic candidate for breast cancer: laminin-332 overexpressing myofibroblast formation via epithelial-mesenchymal transition in the interface zone”

Joint MRS-AACR Conference on Metastasis and the Tumor Microenvironment

Oct 20 – 24, 2009 Versailles, France

“Tumor Margin as a Unique Zone, which can be molecularly distinguished, in TME”

Cancer Microenvironment / 5th International Conference on Tumor Microenvironment: Progression, Therapy, and Prevention

III. Awards and Honors

August, 2012 Academic Award for Excellence Yonsei University College of Medicine

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