Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Making Proteins To Fight Cancer

13.01.2006


An approach to treating intestine cancer is being developed by Russian researchers from the Bioengineering Centre, Russian Academy of Sciences, under Anna Prokhorchuk’s guidance jointly with American colleagues sponsored by the international CRDF foundation and the Federal Agency for Science and Innovation (Rosnauka).



Any cancerous disease changes the genetic landscape – some genes are suppressed, others get activated, which results in tumour growth, the formation of metastases, and cancer spreads beyond immune system control. The universal mechanism which regulates genes’ activity is DNA methylation, where a methyl group is joined to a certain section of a molecule. Special methyl-DNA binding proteins come into action, bound with a section of the methylated DNA and this suppresses gene activity. The researchers are interested in one of such proteins named Kaiso. They assume that this protein plays an important role in the intestine cancer development, and it can be used for diagnostics and treatment.

First, the researchers measured the level of expression of the Kaiso protein gene in intestinal tumours in mice and in human patients. The level of expression turned out to be dozens of times higher than that in healthy organs and tissues. ‘Kaiso-zero’ mice were then used which were found to be resistant to cancer. The same resistance to cancer was acquired by mice whose DNA methylation had been suppressed by other methods.


As the Kaiso protein content in the majority of human tumours is much higher than that in healthy tissues, it can be potentially used for early detection of cancer. Contemporary molecular methods allow to analyze expression of dozens of genes in the cancerous growth tissues and to compare the obtained picture with the “gene portrait” of normal cells. Certainly, the Kaiso gene is not the only one that can be used for such diagnosticums. The tumour represents a very heterogeneous and rather dynamic system, which requires knowledge of almost the entire “genetic portrait” of 28,000 genes.

It is thought that there are other between 10 and 30 key genes which can also serve as markers of tumour characteristics. This will save resources and time, relieving the necessity of analyzing the entire multithousand genome.

In cancer therapy, chimeric Kaiso protein could be created. The ordinary Kaiso protein (via DNA methylated binding) inhibits the work of cancer suppressor genes. However, it is possible, using the same properties of the protein, to make it not suppress, but reinforce the work of these genes. This is what the researchers are striving to achieve. “Although, there are hidden pitfalls here,” explains Anna Prokhorchuk, project manager. “It is necessary to make chimeric Kaiso work only to activate cancer suppressor genes, not the other methylated DNA sequences. This is what we are working at in the Bioengineering Centre jointly with American colleagues.” The ultimate aim of the investigation is to scrutinize the possibility for using Kaiso protein as a target for directional anticancer therapy.

Sergey Komarov | alfa
Further information:
http://www.informnauka.ru

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Supersensitive through quantum entanglement

28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy under real ambient pressure conditions

28.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Mice provide insight into genetics of autism spectrum disorders

28.06.2017 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>