Michael Rodio | Mar. 7, 2014 | Harper Cancer Research Institute
In his lab at the Harper Cancer Research Institute, Dr. Reginald Hill is trying to decipher a code.
Hill, a biology professor at the University of Notre Dame, is targeting the deadliest cancer known: pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma.
From its earliest stages, pancreatic cancer bombards surrounding cells—collectively called the microenvironment—with messages telling them how to behave. The messages, contained in thousands of tiny packets called exosomes, effectively commandeer the microenvironment cells into protecting and providing for the cancer cells.