Study results published in the August issue of the journal Cancer reinforce previous findings that the laminin-8 genes and the resulting protein may be highly valuable targets in the fight against malignant brain tumors.
Researchers at Cedars-Sinai’s Maxine Dunitz Neurosurgical Institute report that over-expression of laminin-8 can be used as a predictor of a tumor’s grade, its potential for recurrence, and the patient’s length of survival. This follows their earlier findings that laminin-8 is up-regulated in the most aggressive brain tumors, glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), and that the gene promotes the tumor cells’ ability to invade neighboring tissue.
The thin “basement membrane” that lies beneath the surface layer of blood vessels contains proteins called laminins. Fifteen laminins have been identified to date. The Cedars-Sinai researchers found that during tumor progression, laminin-9, which is expressed weakly in normal brain tissue and low-grade glial tumors, switched to laminin-8, and the level of expression of the laminin-8 increased significantly, depending on brain tumor grade.
Sandy Van | Cedars-Sinai
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