Amy Rowat

Amy Rowat, PhD

Professor, Department of Integrative Biology and Physiology
Member, Biomedical Engineering Interdepartmental Program



Scientific Interests

Dr. Amy Rowat's lab is interested in the material properties of biological matter, the origins of this behavior and its role in cancer. Their research efforts largely focus on the physical properties of cancer cells and whole tumors in disease progression and chemoresistance. Rowat's multidisciplinary team is addressing these questions by developing and merging methods in physics, engineering, cell and molecular biology. Developing a quantitative framework to understand the altered mechanical properties of cancer cells and how these relate to functional behaviors such as invasion and sensitivity to chemotherapy, as well as the underlying molecular origins of these behaviors, should provide a deeper understanding of cancer progression and identify novel therapeutic approaches.

Highlighted Publications

Nyberg KD, Nguyen AV, Khismatullin DB, Rowat AC. Quantitative deformability cytometry (q-DC): rapid measurements of single cell viscoelastic properties. Biophys J. [in press]

Kim TH, Gill NK, Nyberg KD, Nguyen AV, Hohlbauch SV, Geisse NA, Nowell CJ, Sloan EK, Rowat AC. Cancer cells become less deformable and more invasive with activation of Beta-adrenergic signaling. J Cell Sci. 2016 Dec 15;129(24):4563-4575. Epub 2016 Nov 14.

Chan CK, Pan Y, Nyberg K, Marra MA, Lim EL, Jones SJ, Maar D, Gibb EA, Gunaratne PH, Robertson AG, Rowat AC. Tumour-suppressor microRNAs regulate ovarian cancer cell physical properties and invasive behaviour. Open Biol. 2016 Nov;6(11). pii: 160275.

Nguyen AV, Nyberg KD, Scott MB, Welsh AM, Nguyen AH, Wu N, Hohlbauch SV, Geisse NA, Gibb EA, Robertson AG, Donahue TR, Rowat AC. Stiffness of pancreatic cancer cells is associated with increased invasive potential. Integr Biol (Camb). 2016 Dec 5;8(12):1232-1245.

Kim TH, Rowat AC, Sloan EK. Neural regulation of cancer: from mechanobiology to inflammation. Clin Transl Immunology. 2016 May 13;5(5):e78. doi: 10.1038/cti.2016.18. eCollection 2016 May. Review.