Laboratory of Gynaecological Tumor and Development Biology
The placenta is a temporary organ established to ensure a continuous food and gas supply to the growing foetus. This requires an efficient access of maternal blood to a large transporting epithelial contact area: the syncytiotrophoblast. This is made possible by the rapidly growing cytotrophoblast and ensuing endometrial invasion by the mononuclear cytotrophoblastic cells (CTB). However trophoblast invasion is limited both spatially (to the endometrium and the proximal third of the myometrium) and temporally (to first half of pregnancy). Deregulation of trophoblastic invasiveness and/or differentiation could lead to pregnancy pathologies such as preeclampsia.
Our lab focuses on regulation of trophoblastic cell invasiveness, mechanism of cytotrophoblast differentiation and development of biomarker of preeclampsia.
Role of GRP78 in ovarian carcinogenesis
Glucose-regulated protein 78 (GRP78) is a chaperone protein involved in folding of proteins. It is necessary for the survival of stressed cells such as cancer cells and could induce invasion of tumour cells by an unknown mechanism that we would like to study.
This protein is an endoplasmic reticulum-associated protein but it was also observed on cell membranes on some malignant cells. This localization, specific of some cancer cells, suggests that GRP78 could be a relevant cell surface target for therapeutic intervention. We are interested in the role of GRP78, and particularly membrane GRP78 in ovarian carcinogenesis, and its utility for targeted nanotherapy.