Cancer cells have multiple ways to avoid apoptosis, programmed cell death the means by which organisms deal with defective cells. One defense is to produce quantities of phosphatic acid, a phospholipid constituent of cellular membranes.
Unlike other phospholipids, phosphatidic acid also acts as a signaling molecule for cells promoting cellular growth and preventing apoptosis. Finnish and Danish researchers have now shown that phosphatidic acid may well be a target molecule for novel anti-cancer drugs.
Siramesine is a drug molecule developed and synthesized by Lundbeck A/S for the treatment of anxiety. Its development was discontinued due to unsatisfying efficacy in clinical trials in 2002. Later professor Marja Jäättelä and co-workers at the Danish cancer institute discovered that siramesine effectively inhibits the growth of both cultured cancer cells as well as solid tumors in mice. Siramesine is known to bind sigma-receptors, which physiological role remains unknown, on the cellular surface and this interaction was also believed to underlie its anti-tumor actions.
Researchers at the University of Helsinki, Finland, lead by Professor Paavo Kinnunen, studied the interaction of this drug with different phospholipids using biophysical methods and different model cellular membranes. In addition a computer simulation was performed as collaboration with MEMPHYS, Odense, Denmark, to further their understanding of this interaction.
“The key finding of our study was that siramesine avidly and specifically binds to phosphatidic acid”, says MD Mikko Parry from Helsinki Biophysics & Biomembrane group at the Institute of Biomedicine, University of Helsinki.
“Importantly, this is the first time it’s shown that a lipid second messenger can act as a drug target: it is a totally new mechanism of action and constitutes a novel paradigm for developing new, more effective anti-cancer drugs.”
Paivi Lehtinen | alfa
Win-win strategies for climate and food security
02.10.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)
The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...
Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...
17.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
10.10.2017 | Event News
20.10.2017 | Information Technology
20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research