Course catalogue doctoral education - VT20

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Title Tumor Microenvironment
Course number 3188
Programme Tumörbiologi och onkologi (FoTO)
Language English
Credits 1.5
Date 2019-11-04 -- 2019-11-08
Responsible KI department Institutionen för mikrobiologi, tumör- och cellbiologi
Specific entry requirements Basic course in tumor biology and oncology or corresponding knowledge.
Purpose of the course The course will provide the students with a basic knowledge within the expanding field of tumor microenvironment by describing the interactions of tumor cells with tumor associated cells as well as with the extracellular matrix (ECM). The students will be enabled to develop understanding of pros and cons with in vitro 2D and 3D cell co-cultures, ex vivo models and in vivo tumor models.
Intended learning outcomes After completion of the course, the students should be able to:
- Describe the main cellular and acellular components of tumor microenvironment (TME).
- Discuss the mechanisms of TME communication.
- Describe which non-malignant and tumor associated cells are known to affect the tumor initiation, progression and therapy responses.
- Understand how TME communication relates to fibrotic/desmoplastic and inflammatory responses, and hypoxia & angiogenesis.
- Consider how the TME processes can contribute to the malignant growth, metastatic cancer progression and drug resistance.
- Understand pros and cons of different types of cell and tissue (co-)culture models (including 3D organoids) and in vivo tumor models.
- Have insights in key clinical implications regarding the field.
Contents of the course The course is designed for PhD students with an interest in tumor biology. The course will address the key concepts of cancer associated fibroblasts, endothelial cells, pericytes, and inflammatory & immune cells, as well as the ECM and associated factors, and hypoxia, and how all of these can differ according to the type, stage, and location of the cancer. These TME properties will be further related to tumor metabolism, growth, invasion, metastasis, angiogenesis and lymphangiogenesis, as well as drug responses. Clinical applications within the field are presented during the course.
Teaching and learning activities The course is designed for PhD students with an interest and personal involvement in tumor biology. It consists of lectures by experts in the field and group discussions based on problem based learning on topics related to the course, with the specific aim to stimulate an active participation from the course participants together with course lecturers. The key topics will be summarized and discussed daily in a short concluding summary session. Students are expected to discuss the developments of the TME field and present their gained knowledge and views on the central issues of pre-clinical versus clinical use of TME targeting therapies.
Compulsory elements Attendance to all the activities of the course and the written examination are mandatory. Absence from mandatory parts of the course will have to be compensated for by other activities after discussion with the course leaders.
Examination The course assignments will consist of 1) organization of one short summary session with a pre-assigned group of students and 2) oral discussion of a problem-based case. For the first assignment, formative assessment will be provided by course organizers and the other co-organizing students in the forms of a written comment about the session and group performance. The course organizers will serve as moderators in the summary sessions. The assessment of the second assignment will be performed on an individual basis. One or two students will be appointed as reviewer(s) to provide peer feedback for the presenter, in line with concept of formative assignment. The course organizers will lead a written examination, and will be responsible for summative individual assessment.
Literature and other teaching material Selection of recommended recently published review articles and research papers on the topic.
Number of students 8 - 32
Selection of students Selection will be based on 1) the relevance of the course syllabus for the applicant's doctoral project (according to written motivation), 2) date for registration as a doctoral student (priority given to earlier registration date)
More information The course will be organized as a full day course with lectures, group discussions and summary sessions at 9-17 Mon-Fri in Biomedicum, Karolinska Institutet. The course was previously given as 2671.
Additional course leader Jordi Gonzalez Molina; jordi.gonzalez-molina@ki.se
Latest course evaluation Course evaluation report
Course responsible Kaisa Lehti
Institutionen för mikrobiologi, tumör- och cellbiologi

kaisa.lehti@ki.se
Contact person Kaisa Lehti
Institutionen för mikrobiologi, tumör- och cellbiologi

kaisa.lehti@ki.se


Jordi Gonzalez-Molina
Institutionen för mikrobiologi, tumör- och cellbiologi

jordi.gonzalez-molina@ki.se