Cyclin D proteins not required for development of tissues, as previously believed
In an experiment that appears to refute current theory, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute scientists have found that removing three key proteins believed essential to cell division and growth had little impact on normal tissue development of a mouse embryo. These same proteins, when overly active, have been linked to cancer cell proliferation.
With one significant exception, the absence of proteins called cyclin D1, D2, and D3 seemed to have no deleterious effect on development of the tissues and organs of laboratory mouse embryos. "D-type cyclins" are molecules that sense growth signals from the cell’s environment and, when appropriate, switch on cell division and growth. But when the system is faulty, the cyclins over-respond to the growth signals and can cause cancerous growth. The discovery that these proteins aren’t indispensable lends encouragement to an idea that blocking overactive cyclins could halt the growth of cancer.
Bill Schaller | EurekAlert!
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