Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Thyroid cancer discovery points to new treatments, prevention

17.11.2006
The actions of a mutated protein in cells linked to thyroid cancer have been uncovered by researchers at Queen’s University. The discovery paves the way for the future development of drugs to more effectively target, treat and possibly even prevent both inherited and non-inherited thyroid cancers.

“We now know why this gene causes these tumours and can start looking at how best to target the mutant proteins so that the cells expressing them can be killed or stopped from growing,” says Lois Mulligan, professor of pathology and molecular medicine with the Division of Cancer Biology and Genetics of the Queen’s Cancer Research Institute. She is senior author of a study to be published November 15 in the journal Cancer Research.

Taranjit S. Gujral, a Ph D student in Queen’s Department of Pathology and Molecular Medicine and lead author on the paper, developed three-dimensional models of the mutated RET protein implicated in a condition causing cancerous thyroid tumours. The model allowed him to predict and compare the protein’s molecular actions and to see that the protein was ten times more active than normal in cells associated with Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia 2B (MEN 2B) syndrome, an inherited cancer syndrome. Co-authors on the study include Vinay K. Singh and Zongchao Jia of Queen’s Biochemistry Department.

“It’s like stepping on the gas in a car and getting way more gas than you bargained for,” says Mulligan. “The mutation may cause some new actions but it chiefly does some actions more efficiently than normal.”

... more about:
»Cancer »Thyroid

MEN 2B is a dominantly inherited condition – the most severe of its kind – and is characterized by the early onset of thyroid tumours, sometimes even affecting infants, and can also cause developmental abnormalities including elongated bones, gastric problems and bumpy lips.

MEN 2B is currently treated with surgery, and other treatments, such as radiation and chemotherapy are not very effective. The study provides valuable tools for specific targeting of the actions of the protein that may aid in the development of anticancer therapies.

The models created by Mr. Gujral, a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Trainee in Transdisciplinary Cancer Research and Protein Function Discovery, can be used further to help illuminate the actions of the protein with MEN 2B’s other mutations. The research team credits the transdisciplinary approach and its benefits for providing fresh perspectives in generating the new understanding of RET’s role in MEN 2B. Additional funding for the study came from the Canadian Cancer Society and the CIHR.

Contacts:

Sarah Withrow, Communications Officer, 613.533.3280
Lorinda Peterson, Communications Coordinator, 613.533.3234

Sarah Withrow | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.queensu.ca

Further reports about: Cancer Thyroid

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Single-stranded DNA and RNA origami go live
15.12.2017 | Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard

nachricht New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists
15.12.2017 | Louisiana State University

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: First-of-its-kind chemical oscillator offers new level of molecular control

DNA molecules that follow specific instructions could offer more precise molecular control of synthetic chemical systems, a discovery that opens the door for engineers to create molecular machines with new and complex behaviors.

Researchers have created chemical amplifiers and a chemical oscillator using a systematic method that has the potential to embed sophisticated circuit...

Im Focus: Long-lived storage of a photonic qubit for worldwide teleportation

MPQ scientists achieve long storage times for photonic quantum bits which break the lower bound for direct teleportation in a global quantum network.

Concerning the development of quantum memories for the realization of global quantum networks, scientists of the Quantum Dynamics Division led by Professor...

Im Focus: Electromagnetic water cloak eliminates drag and wake

Detailed calculations show water cloaks are feasible with today's technology

Researchers have developed a water cloaking concept based on electromagnetic forces that could eliminate an object's wake, greatly reducing its drag while...

Im Focus: Scientists channel graphene to understand filtration and ion transport into cells

Tiny pores at a cell's entryway act as miniature bouncers, letting in some electrically charged atoms--ions--but blocking others. Operating as exquisitely sensitive filters, these "ion channels" play a critical role in biological functions such as muscle contraction and the firing of brain cells.

To rapidly transport the right ions through the cell membrane, the tiny channels rely on a complex interplay between the ions and surrounding molecules,...

Im Focus: Towards data storage at the single molecule level

The miniaturization of the current technology of storage media is hindered by fundamental limits of quantum mechanics. A new approach consists in using so-called spin-crossover molecules as the smallest possible storage unit. Similar to normal hard drives, these special molecules can save information via their magnetic state. A research team from Kiel University has now managed to successfully place a new class of spin-crossover molecules onto a surface and to improve the molecule’s storage capacity. The storage density of conventional hard drives could therefore theoretically be increased by more than one hundred fold. The study has been published in the scientific journal Nano Letters.

Over the past few years, the building blocks of storage media have gotten ever smaller. But further miniaturization of the current technology is hindered by...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

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

AKL’18: The opportunities and challenges of digitalization in the laser industry

07.12.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Engineers program tiny robots to move, think like insects

15.12.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

One in 5 materials chemistry papers may be wrong, study suggests

15.12.2017 | Materials Sciences

New antbird species discovered in Peru by LSU ornithologists

15.12.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>