Integrated Mathematical Oncology
Moffit Cancer Center, USA
Rightfully, cancer evolution is increasingly becoming the focus of many of the efforts devoted to understanding cancer growth and progression as well as treatment. Somatic evolution is responsible for the accumulation of hallmarks that characterize the transformation of neoplastic cells into fully formed aggressive cancers. Traditionally, efforts to characterize somatic evolution have leaned heavily on the former as the tools to do so were readily available to cancer biologists. The latter, due to its complexity requires new approaches in which mathematical modeling are proving to be a key part. In this talk I will describe a variety of mathematical models we have used to elucidate various aspects of selection on cancer initiation, metastasis and the emergence of treatment resistance. A key aspect of many of these models is that they aim to capture the ecology of the tumor environment, a process which requires the close collaboration with cell biologists such as many of my colleagues at the Moffitt Cancer Center.