Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Paula Bos

Second Advisor

Robert Diegelmann

Third Advisor

Rebecca Heise

Fourth Advisor

Chris Lemmon


In breast cancer, the interplay between the immune system and the extracellular matrix has been heavily implicated in the progression cancer. Previous studies done by this lab have shown that by regulatory T cell ablation decreases tumor growth and metastasis through the release of immunosuppression. It was also found that ablation of regulatory T cells led to a reprogramming of tumor associated macrophages to an anti-tumor phenotype and increased expression of remodeling factors. This led to the conclusion that releasing the immunosuppression through ablation changes the extracellular matrix components. Here we explore the effect regulatory T cell ablation has on the extracellular matrix and its subsequent effect on tumor cell viability and influence on the mesenchymal phenotype. We discover regulatory T cell ablated extracellular matrix does have an impact on the viability of PyMT tumor cells but not on the viability of E0771 tumor cells. We also found that regulatory T cell ablated extracellular matrix does not have any significant effect on the expression of epithelial mesenchymal transition markers. Thus, regulatory T cell ablated extracellular matrix is contributing to the reduced viability of tumor cells.


© Taylor M. Calicchia

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission


Available for download on Monday, May 01, 2220