Mechanisms and impact of altered tumour mechanics
The physical characteristics of tumours are intricately linked to the tumour phenotype and difficulties during treatment. Many factors contribute to the increased stiffness of tumours; from increased matrix deposition, matrix remodelling by forces from cancer cells and stromal fibroblasts, matrix crosslinking, increased cellularity, and the build-up of both solid and interstitial pressure. Increased stiffness then feeds back to increase tumour invasiveness and reduce therapy efficacy. Increased understanding of this interplay is offering new therapeutic avenues.