Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers find gene that turns up effect of chemotherapy

30.01.2013
Chemotherapy is one of the most common treatments for cancer patients.
However, many patients suffer from serious side-effects and a large proportion does not respond to the treatment. Researchers from the Biotech Research and Innovation Centre (BRIC) and Center for Healthy Aging, University of Copenhagen, now show that the gene FBH1 helps turn up the effect of chemotherapy. The results are published today in the Journal Nature Communications.

”Our results show that the gene FBH1 is crucial in order for some chemotherapeutics to become active in the body and kill the cancer cells. If we can find a feasible method to increase the activity of the gene, we can use our cells’ own resources to improve cancer treatment, says associate professor Claus Sørensen who has lead the team of researchers behind the results.

Own gene helps chemotherapy fight cancer

The researchers have used a method called RNA interference to study whether some of the genes in our DNA are important for cancer cells to react to certain chemotherapeutics.

”By using the method to remove single genes from cancer cells and then exposing the cells to chemotherapy, we found that FBH1 is important for the effect of the chemotherapy. Actually, the presence of the gene was an absolutely requirement in order to effectively kill the cancer cells with the type of chemotherapeutics we have studied, says postdoc Kasper Fugger who has led the experimental part of the investigation.

Cancer cells containing FBH1 obtain DNA damage (red staining) when exposed to chemotherapy

Chemotherapy act by exposing cancer cells to a kind of extreme stress when they divide. The result is detrimental damage to the cells’ DNA that cannot be repaired, causing the cells to die. The new results show that it is in fact FBH1 that contributes to the formation of DNA damage when treating with chemotherapy and this knowledge can be used to optimize cancer therapy.

Selection of patients for chemotherapy

In the last decade it has become clear that targeted treatment to individual cancer patients is crucial for an effective treatment with least possible side-effects. By assessing the presence of FBH1 in a tumour the doctors can get an indication of whether the patient will benefit from chemotherapy.

”Our results could help indicate that patients with low or no FBH1 in the cancer cells will not benefit from certain types of chemotherapy, but should be administered another type of treatment. So by using the genetic fingerprint of a tumour doctors can adjust the treatment to individual patients, says Claus Sørensen.

The next step - finding the FBH1 volume knob

The next step for the research team is to investigate the presence of changes, so-called mutations in FBH1. Identifying mutations rendering cancer cells resistant to certain chemotherapeutics can be used to target the treatment even better to individual patients. Another goal for the researchers is to find a way to turn up the activity of FBH1 in cancer cells.

”Our hope is to find a method to boost the activity of the FBH1 gene in cancer cells since this will make them more sensitive to chemotherapy. Alternatively, we may find a way to simulate an effect similar to that of FBH1, which can be used as additional treatment in order to sensitise cancer cells to chemotherapy. If we achieve this, more patients will benefit from the treatment, says Kasper Fugger.

Original paper

FBH1 co-operates with MUS81 in inducing DNA double-strand breaks and cell death following replication stress, Kasper Fugger, Wai Kit Chu, Peter Haahr, Arne Nedergaard Kousholt, Halfdan Beck, Miranda J. Payne, Katsuhiro Hanada, Ian D. Hickson, Claus Storgaard Sørensen; Nature Coomunications, January 29, 2013.

Contact

Assiciate professor Claus Sørensen
BRIC
Phone: +45 35 32 56 78

Postdoc Kasper Fugger
BRIC
Phone: +45 35 32 56 26

Research coordinator Katrine Sonne-Hansen
BRIC
Phone: +45 35 32 56 48
Mobil: + 45 25 85 47 42

Claus Sørensen | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ku.dk

Further reports about: DNA DNA damage FBH1 Nature Immunology cancer cells

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Bare bones: Making bones transparent
27.04.2017 | California Institute of Technology

nachricht Link Discovered between Immune System, Brain Structure and Memory
26.04.2017 | Universität Basel

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Bare bones: Making bones transparent

27.04.2017 | Life Sciences

Study offers new theoretical approach to describing non-equilibrium phase transitions

27.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

From volcano's slope, NASA instrument looks sky high and to the future

27.04.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>