The processes governing tumor growth and angiogenesis are codependent. To study the relationship between them, we proposed a coupled hybrid continuum-discrete model. In this model, tumor cells, their microenvironment (extracellular matrixes, matrix-degrading enzymes, and tumor angiogenic factors), and their network of blood vessels, described by a series of discrete points, were considered. The results of numerical simulation reveal the process of tumor growth and the change in microenvironment from avascular to vascular stage, indicating that the network of blood vessels develops gradually as the tumor grows. Our findings also reveal that a tumor is divided into three regions: necrotic, semi-necrotic, and well-vascularized. The results agree well with the previous relevant studies and physiological facts, and this model represents a platform for further investigations of tumor therapy.
Lyu, J., Cao, J., Zhang, P., Liu, Y., & Cheng, H. (2016). Coupled hybrid continuum-discrete model of tumor angiogenesis and growth. PLoS ONE, 11(10). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0163173