Jenna Abdelhamed


Presentation: 9:00-10:15, Kennedy Union Ballroom



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Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) is one of the most common, aggressive, and deadly types of brain cancer. Its high malignancy is attributed to its surrounding environment, consisting of a great amount of blood vessels, neurons, and astrocyte processes, allowing tumors to reproduce and evade quickly. Upon diagnosis, GBM patients have a median survival time of 12-15 months, even with available treatment modalities such as surgery, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy. To explore new treatment modalities, it is important to understand the oncogenesis, invasion mechanisms, and cellular characteristics unique to GBM. The tumor’s microenvironment can promote migration as GBM interacts with components in the brain's extracellular matrix, triggering intracellular cascades such as the calcium signaling pathway, which has caught the attention of numerous researchers. Calcium signaling pathways are a key step in signal transduction, linking external stimuli into cellular response, and are implicated in GBM proliferation and metastatic-related processes. This work displays the invasion of GBM cells through our established 3D tumor models, which consist of GBM spheroids placed into a Polydimethylsiloxane) microfluidic device to mimic the tumor microenvironment of GBM. With these 3D tumor models, two phenotypes of the cancer can be established, an invasive and noninvasive phenotype, which allow for the comparison of intracellular calcium concentrations, and of migration patterns and lengths. This research provides data regarding the relationship between the two phenotypes and calcium signaling activity. This is important because it will allow further research on mediators of the Ca2+ pathway such as Ca2+channels and their roles in mediating invasion, potentially laying groundwork for new therapies that limit GBM migration.

Publication Date


Project Designation

Honors Thesis

Primary Advisor

Loan T. Bui

Primary Advisor's Department



Stander Symposium, College of Arts and Sciences

Institutional Learning Goals


Understanding Calcium Signaling in Invasive GBM Cells in a Microfluidic Model