Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Scientists stalk PPAR-gamma, find novel cancer connection

08.12.2004


Research shows existing diabetes drugs may kill multiple myeloma



In laboratory tests on multiple myeloma cells, University of Rochester researchers found that this type of cancer expresses a protein that makes it an easy target for an existing class of diabetes drugs. After more investigation, they hope the discovery will lead to a new, targeted therapy for myeloma patients. "To our knowledge, this is the first time anyone has shown that multiple myeloma cells are sensitive to these agents, and we found multiple myeloma cells are killed quite effectively," says lead author Richard P. Phipps, Ph.D., professor of Environmental Medicine and of Oncology at the University of Rochester Medical Center.

The research was reported in the November issue of Clinical Immunology.


The drugs in question are from the thiazolidinedione (TZD) class of anti-diabetic therapies, known as PPAR-gamma ligands. They bind to PPAR-gamma, a protein associated with multiple myeloma and many other cancers, as well as chronic inflammation and diabetes. When the drugs bind to PPAR-gamma, at least in laboratory experiments, the cancerous cells are destroyed.

PPAR-ligands are emerging as a new type of cancer therapy because they directly target errant cells and stop tumor growth, at least in animal models. Phipps’ laboratory also found that the PPAR-ligands currently used in anti-diabetic drugs could induce a type of cell death called apoptosis. This is significant because multiple myeloma is very difficult to treat, as it is usually resistant to drug-induced apoptosis.

Another encouraging factor is that the anti-diabetes drugs were able to kill the multiple myeloma cells, despite the fact that myeloma produces its own growth factor (Interleukin 6), which usually enables the cancer to multiply more effectively. Furthermore, the Phipps lab found that the effectiveness of the TZD drugs was enhanced when combined with Vitamin A-like compounds.

Co-investigator Steven Bernstein, M.D., who treats myeloma patients at the University’s James P. Wilmot Cancer Center, is cautious but hopeful about the prospects of this research leading to a new treatment. "Although we are optimistic about these early findings, we need to do further investigation to understand how the TZD class of drugs work against multiple myeloma, before clinical trials are warranted."

Each year doctors diagnose about 14,000 people in the United States with multiple myeloma, which accounts for about 10 percent of the blood cancers. Myeloma is characterized by an abnormal number of white blood cells called plasma cells. They crowd out healthy blood cells in the bone marrow, and make proteins that lead to bone destruction, kidney damage, and recurrent infections.

High-dose chemotherapy and stem-cell transplant are the standard treatments. Recently, patients have also experienced some success with two new, biologically targeted therapies: thalidomide, which was given decades ago to women for morning sickness, and the proteosome inhibitor Velcade, which targets the parts of the cell that regulates protein expression, Bernstein said. The latest research may offer a third novel approach.

The myeloma research emerged from a larger investigation conducted by Phipps’ laboratory into inflammation, the culprit of many serious illnesses. One area of focus is how the immune system reacts to PPAR-ligands.

Leslie Orr | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.rochester.edu

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity
22.09.2017 | DFG-Forschungszentrum für Regenerative Therapien TU Dresden

nachricht The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet
22.09.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für Biochemie

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity

22.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Penn first in world to treat patient with new radiation technology

22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering

Calculating quietness

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>