Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

NIH scientists find a potential new avenue for cancer therapies

20.12.2011
Recent findings in mice suggest that blocking the production of small molecules produced in the body, known as epoxyeicosatrienoic acids (EETs), may represent a novel strategy for treating cancer by eliminating the blood vessels that feed cancer tumors.

This research is the first to show that EETs work in concert with vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), a protein known to induce blood vessel growth. Together, EETs and VEGF promote metastasis, or the spread of cancer, by encouraging the growth of blood vessels that supply nutrients to cancer cells.

The research team comprised of scientists from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), which is part of the National Institutes of Health, and several other institutions, published its data online in the Dec. 19 issue of The Journal of Clinical Investigation.

Preclinical research suggests that patients with a variety of vascular conditions, such as diabetes, hypertension, inflammation, stroke, and heart attack may benefit by increasing their EET levels, because the compounds cause blood vessels to dilate and reduce tissue inflammation and cell death. However, previous work has also demonstrated that EETs make tumor cells grow faster and cause them to migrate and become metastatic. Darryl Zeldin, M.D., NIEHS scientific director and author on the paper, said he believed that human metabolism has to achieve a certain harmony in regard to EETs.

"The body has to produce enough EETs to maintain a healthy cardiovascular system without promoting cancer. It has to balance the double-edged sword just right," Zeldin said.

To find out how EETs encourage the development of cancer, the team created two mice strains, one with high levels of EETs and one with low levels of EETs.

"The mice with higher EETs developed more metastatic tumors compared to the mice with lower EETs," Zeldin said. "Often, the tumor itself will produce more EETs, which can speed up tumor growth and its subsequent spread, but our analysis demonstrated that the EETs produced by the surrounding tissues encouraged tumor growth and migration."

Matthew Edin, Ph.D., a research fellow in Zeldin's group, is one of the authors on the paper and helped develop the mice strains. He said EETs directly lead to the creation of new blood vessels, also known as angiogenesis, which the cancer cells need in order to receive oxygen and nutrients to grow. He equated the process to what happens when a builder begins constructing a new housing development.

"One of the first things construction crews have to do is build the roads, so that materials and workers can be transported to the site," Edin said. "In cancer, EETs accelerate the road building, allowing the housing development to expand quickly."

According to Dipak Panigrahy, M.D., an author on the paper and a research associate at the Dana-Farber/Children's Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, EETs have a potent stimulatory effect promoting cancer growth and metastasis, a process that could be effectively inhibited using novel antagonists, such as EEZE, which are compounds that interfere with this pathway in mice. EEZE has not been approved for human use, and is only used for research.

"EEZE is structurally similar to EETs, but it blocks the effect of EETs and dramatically slows tumorigenesis," Panigrahy explained.

Mark Kieran, M.D., Ph.D., another author of this collaborative study and also from Dana-Farber, commented on the importance of the research.

"The identification of an old pathway studied for many years in cardiovascular disease has found a new role in regulating cancer growth and metastasis, the primary causes of cancer related deaths," he said. "With these findings, opportunities to better understand the underlying mechanisms that drive cancer, and thus the development of effective therapies for their treatment, moves one step closer to a reality."

Reference: Panigrahy D, Edin ML, Lee CR, Huang S, Bielenberg DR, Butterfield CE, Barnes CM, Mammoto A, Mammoto T, Luria A, Benny O, Chaponis DM, Dudley AC, Greene ER, Vergilio JA, Pietramaggiori G, Scherer-Pietramaggiori SS, Short SM, Seth M, Lih FB, Tomer KB, Yang J, Schwendener RA, Hammock BD, Falck JR, Manthati VL, Ingber DE, Kaipainen A, D'Amore PA, Kieran MW, Zeldin DC. 2011. Epoxyeicosanoids stimulate multiorgan metastasis and tumor dormancy escape in mice. J Clin Invest; doi:10.1172/JCI58128 [Online 19 December 2011].

The NIEHS supports research to understand the effects of the environment on human health and is part of NIH. For more information on environmental health topics, visit www.niehs.nih.gov. Subscribe to one or more of the NIEHS news lists (www.niehs.nih.gov/news/releases/newslist/index.cfm) to stay current on NIEHS news, press releases, grant opportunities, training, events, and publications.

About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov.

NIH...Turning Discovery Into Health

Robin Arnette | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.niehs.nih.gov

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Routing gene therapy directly into the brain
07.12.2017 | Boston Children's Hospital

nachricht New Hope for Cancer Therapies: Targeted Monitoring may help Improve Tumor Treatment
01.12.2017 | Berliner Institut für Gesundheitsforschung / Berlin Institute of Health (BIH)

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

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...

Im Focus: Successful Mechanical Testing of Nanowires

With innovative experiments, researchers at the Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht and the Technical University Hamburg unravel why tiny metallic structures are extremely strong

Light-weight and simultaneously strong – porous metallic nanomaterials promise interesting applications as, for instance, for future aeroplanes with enhanced...

Im Focus: Virtual Reality for Bacteria

An interdisciplinary group of researchers interfaced individual bacteria with a computer to build a hybrid bio-digital circuit - Study published in Nature Communications

Scientists at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) have managed to control the behavior of individual bacteria by connecting them to a...

Im Focus: A space-time sensor for light-matter interactions

Physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (run jointly by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute for Quantum Optics) have developed an attosecond electron microscope that allows them to visualize the dispersion of light in time and space, and observe the motions of electrons in atoms.

The most basic of all physical interactions in nature is that between light and matter. This interaction takes place in attosecond times (i.e. billionths of a...

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

Midwife and signpost for photons

11.12.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

How do megacities impact coastal seas? Searching for evidence in Chinese marginal seas

11.12.2017 | Earth Sciences

PhoxTroT: Optical Interconnect Technologies Revolutionized Data Centers and HPC Systems

11.12.2017 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>