Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Research reveals molecular pathway behind invasive prostate cancers

University of Cincinnati (UC) cancer and cell biologists have identified a new molecular pathway key to the development of invasive prostate cancers.

In a preclinical study led by Maria Diaz-Meco, PhD, the UC team found that simultaneous inactivation of two particular genes—known as PTEN and Par-4—caused the rapid development of invasive prostate cancer tumors in mice.

"We knew that independent mutations in either of these genes could result in benign tumors, but when those changes occur simultaneously it appears to have a synergistic effect that causes prostate cancer," explains Diaz-Meco, an associate professor of cancer and cell biology at UC and corresponding author of the paper. "This switch affects the cell's ability to both grow and survive, leading to more aggressive and invasive tumors."

"This is an important discovery because—until now—those signaling pathways were not clearly defined. Without a clear molecular target, it's impossible to develop effective drugs to treat this disease without causing harm to the patient," she adds.

Diaz-Meco and her team report their findings online ahead of print in Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) the week of May 18.

PTEN is a well-defined gene shown to be suppressed in prostate cancer tumors, as well as in other types of cancer. Its mutation has been shown to result in the formation of benign tumors. Par-4 gene is also mutated in prostate cancer, but this study is the first to report its relationship with PTEN mutations and aggressive prostate cancer tumor development.

The UC study was done in a laboratory mouse model over the course of two years. Data from the mouse model was correlated and compared to human prostate cancer tissue samples to determine if their findings were applicable in humans as well.

"Theoretically, this new knowledge could be used to better categorize a tumor's aggressiveness by measuring the levels of PTEN and Par-4 expressed in a tissue biopsy," adds Diaz-Meco. "That would help clinicians make tough decisions about how aggressively to treat a patient's prostate cancer and minimize unnecessary treatment."

Cancer and cell biologists are working on identifying the molecular targets involved in cancer progression to develop a better understand the mechanisms of action that lead to prostate cancer so that pharmaceutical companies and clinicians can develop better methods of diagnosing and treating the disease.

Funding for this study comes from the National Cancer Institute and National Institutes of Health. Coauthors of the study include UC's Shadi Abu-Baker, Jayashree Joshi, Anita Galvez, Elias Castilla, and Jorge Moscat, PhD. Spanish National Cancer Research Center's scientists Pablo Fernandez-Marcos, Marta Canamero, Manuel Collado, Gema Moreno-Bueno and Manuel Serrano and Carmen Saez of the Biotechnology Centre of Oslo in Norway also contributed to the study.

Amanda Harper | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Novel mechanisms of action discovered for the skin cancer medication Imiquimod
21.10.2016 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Second research flight into zero gravity
21.10.2016 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

Im Focus: Ultra-thin ferroelectric material for next-generation electronics

'Ferroelectric' materials can switch between different states of electrical polarization in response to an external electric field. This flexibility means they show promise for many applications, for example in electronic devices and computer memory. Current ferroelectric materials are highly valued for their thermal and chemical stability and rapid electro-mechanical responses, but creating a material that is scalable down to the tiny sizes needed for technologies like silicon-based semiconductors (Si-based CMOS) has proven challenging.

Now, Hiroshi Funakubo and co-workers at the Tokyo Institute of Technology, in collaboration with researchers across Japan, have conducted experiments to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Resolving the mystery of preeclampsia

21.10.2016 | Health and Medicine

Stanford researchers create new special-purpose computer that may someday save us billions

21.10.2016 | Information Technology

From ancient fossils to future cars

21.10.2016 | Materials Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>