The Cornell Center on the Microenviroment & Metastasis combines expertise in biomedical engineering and clinical research to address and understand the interaction of mechanical forces and chemical cues in cancer metastasis. Our researchers use expertise in fabricating nano- and microfluidic devices to model the tumor environment in three-dimensions. This approach imparts spatial and temporal resolution far greater than obtained by conventional two-dimensional tissue culture models and allows monitoring non-linear responses to a combination of physical, chemical, genetic, and epigenetic stimuli. Our researchers merge these three-dimensional tumor models with advanced imaging techniques to investigate the impact of physicochemical factors in tumor vascularization. Along with these studies, an epigenetic and global transcriptome analysis is underway on the tumor model following various perturbations. This multi-disciplinary approach is yielding quantitative measurements from the highly controlled tumor environment to formulate mathematical models of vascular invasion as well as to generate a better understanding of the signaling pathways that regulate the angiogenic switch.