Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Could metals help treat cancer?

28.07.2008
A fruitful collaboration between chemists and biologists has made it
possible to identify the effects of a new class of molecules,
polyoxometalates(1), primarily composed of metals and oxygen.
These molecules are very powerful inhibitors of a specific protein kinase,
CK2, an enzyme that is overactive in a number of cancers. The enzyme's
instrumental role in controlling cell proliferation and survival makes
it an important target in the search for new medications.
These results have just been published in the journal Chemistry and Biology by
chemists from the Institut de chimie moléculaire (CNRS / UPMC) and
biologists from the Institut de recherche en technologies et sciences
pour le vivant (iRTSV, CEA de Grenoble / CNRS / Inserm).
*Phosphorylation enzymes (2), which include the protein kinase CK2, play
a critical role in controlling cell proliferation. Deregulated protein
kinase activity is implicated in a number of cancers, which has led to a
recent surge in research on molecules that can inhibit the activity of
these enzymes. The currently known CK2 inhibitors are all organic
compounds that neutralize enzymatic activity by binding to its active
site (3).
The contribution of the study carried out by the researchers at the
Institut de chimie moléculaire and the Institut de recherche en
technologies et sciences pour le vivant was to reveal a new class of CK2
inhibitors. The new inhibitors are inorganic molecules, polyoxometalates
(POMs), primarily made up of metals (molybdenum and tungsten) and
oxygen. They are the most powerful CK2 inhibitors yet discovered,
working at very low (nanomolar) concentrations. In addition, the
researchers showed that the mode of action of POMs, although not yet
fully understood, is completely new. Unlike organic inhibitors, POMs do
not bind to the active site of the enzyme.
This work opens up several areas for further research: clarifying the
mechanism of action of these new molecules, finding the minimum
molecular entity that can inhibit enzyme activity, and finally, given
its importance in the health field, improving knowledge of how the
enzyme CK2 works. In the longer term, these results could pave the way
for new approaches to developing anti-cancer drugs.
(1) Polyoxometalates are anionic inorganic metal oxide structures that
have valuable catalytic properties.
(2) Phosphorylation enzymes called protein kinases can attach a
phosphate group to proteins that may be inactive enzymes. The addition
of the phosphate group can activate these "silent" enzymes. Protein
kinases thus play a central role in controlling the activity of numerous
enzymes in the cell.
(3)The active site of an enzyme is a particular region where the
substrates bind together and enzymatic reactions takes place.

Julien Guillaume | alfa
Further information:
http://www.cnrs-dir.fr

Further reports about: CK2 Cancer Inhibitors Kinase enzyme

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Rutgers scientists discover 'Legos of life'
23.01.2018 | Rutgers University

nachricht Researchers identify a protein that keeps metastatic breast cancer cells dormant
23.01.2018 | Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona)

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Optical Nanoscope Allows Imaging of Quantum Dots

Physicists have developed a technique based on optical microscopy that can be used to create images of atoms on the nanoscale. In particular, the new method allows the imaging of quantum dots in a semiconductor chip. Together with colleagues from the University of Bochum, scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute reported the findings in the journal Nature Photonics.

Microscopes allow us to see structures that are otherwise invisible to the human eye. However, conventional optical microscopes cannot be used to image...

Im Focus: Artificial agent designs quantum experiments

On the way to an intelligent laboratory, physicists from Innsbruck and Vienna present an artificial agent that autonomously designs quantum experiments. In initial experiments, the system has independently (re)discovered experimental techniques that are nowadays standard in modern quantum optical laboratories. This shows how machines could play a more creative role in research in the future.

We carry smartphones in our pockets, the streets are dotted with semi-autonomous cars, but in the research laboratory experiments are still being designed by...

Im Focus: Scientists decipher key principle behind reaction of metalloenzymes

So-called pre-distorted states accelerate photochemical reactions too

What enables electrons to be transferred swiftly, for example during photosynthesis? An interdisciplinary team of researchers has worked out the details of how...

Im Focus: The first precise measurement of a single molecule's effective charge

For the first time, scientists have precisely measured the effective electrical charge of a single molecule in solution. This fundamental insight of an SNSF Professor could also pave the way for future medical diagnostics.

Electrical charge is one of the key properties that allows molecules to interact. Life itself depends on this phenomenon: many biological processes involve...

Im Focus: Paradigm shift in Paris: Encouraging an holistic view of laser machining

At the JEC World Composite Show in Paris in March 2018, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT will be focusing on the latest trends and innovations in laser machining of composites. Among other things, researchers at the booth shared with the Aachen Center for Integrative Lightweight Production (AZL) will demonstrate how lasers can be used for joining, structuring, cutting and drilling composite materials.

No other industry has attracted as much public attention to composite materials as the automotive industry, which along with the aerospace industry is a driver...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

10th International Symposium: “Advanced Battery Power – Kraftwerk Batterie” Münster, 10-11 April 2018

08.01.2018 | Event News

See, understand and experience the work of the future

11.12.2017 | Event News

Innovative strategies to tackle parasitic worms

08.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rutgers scientists discover 'Legos of life'

23.01.2018 | Life Sciences

Seabed mining could destroy ecosystems

23.01.2018 | Earth Sciences

Transportable laser

23.01.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>