Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Origin of multiple myeloma found in rare stem cell

04.12.2003


Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center scientists have identified the cell likely to be responsible for the development of multiple myeloma, a cancer of the bone marrow that destroys bone tissue. The research, published in Blood online, suggests that therapies designed for long-term cure of the disease should target this stem cell, which, unlike other cells, can copy itself and differentiate into one or more specialized cell types.

In their studies to learn why multiple myeloma so often recurs following drug treatment, the investigators uncovered a rare stem cell , occurring in just one out of every 10,000 cells or less than one percent of all myeloma cells.

Working with immune system B-cells, the Johns Hopkins team found that this stem cell gives rise to the malignant bone marrow plasma cells characterized by multiple myeloma.



Current treatments target the malignant plasma cells but may not be effective on the errant multiple myeloma stem cells, allowing the cancer to recur. "Most therapies today are aimed at the cancer you can see, but to cure cancer you have to go after the cells responsible for the disease, similar to how we kill a weed by getting at its roots, not just the part above the ground," explains Richard Jones, M.D., professor and director of bone marrow transplant at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center. "If you cut off the flower and stem of a dandelion, it may look like it has died for a period of time, but the weed eventually will grow back. If you get the root, however, the weed does not grow back."

The scientists found the rare stem cell by looking at markers on the surface of damaged B-cells, which develop into plasma cells that cannot divide and multiply. "We know what the markers are on cancerous plasma cells and the antibodies they make, and we also know the markers on B-cells that are not cancerous. So, we went looking for a B-cell that has the same antibodies, can make copies of itself and mature into cancerous plasma cells," says William Matsui, M.D., assistant professor of oncology at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center.

They found that this multiple myeloma stem cell looks and acts genetically different from the plasma cell.

"Because these two cells are biologically different, we may need two therapies – one to kill the plasma cells, or the visible part of the weed; and one to kill the root – the stem cells," says Matsui. "Treatments that are directed at myeloma plasma cells are likely to produce visible results, but they will be temporary improvements unless we also target the myeloma stem cell."

Therapies for myeloma undergoing study at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center include antibodies that target the stem cells and drugs to make them age prematurely. Cancer stem cells have been found as the culprit in chronic myeloid leukemia, and the scientists believe the same pattern of cancer development may apply to other cancers, including breast cancer, acute myeloid leukemia and acute lymphocytic leukemia.

Multiple myeloma is the second most common blood cancer and strikes more than 14,000 Americans each year. Close to 11,000 will die from the disease.


This research was funded by the National Cancer Institute.

Other participants in this research include Carol Ann Huff, Qiuju Wang, Matthew T. Malehorn, James Barber, Yvette Tanhehco, B. Douglas Smith, and Curt I. Civin from the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center.

Vanessa Wasta | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Speed data for the brain’s navigation system
06.12.2016 | Deutsches Zentrum für Neurodegenerative Erkrankungen e.V. (DZNE)

nachricht Study suggests possible new target for treating and preventing Alzheimer's
02.12.2016 | Oregon Health & Science University

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: Significantly more productivity in USP lasers

In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.

Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...

Im Focus: Shape matters when light meets atom

Mapping the interaction of a single atom with a single photon may inform design of quantum devices

Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...

Im Focus: Novel silicon etching technique crafts 3-D gradient refractive index micro-optics

A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.

Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...

Im Focus: Quantum Particles Form Droplets

In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.

“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...

Im Focus: MADMAX: Max Planck Institute for Physics takes up axion research

The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.

The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ICTM Conference 2017: Production technology for turbomachine manufacturing of the future

16.11.2016 | Event News

Innovation Day Laser Technology – Laser Additive Manufacturing

01.11.2016 | Event News

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

14.10.2016 | Event News

 
Latest News

Porous crystalline materials: TU Graz researcher shows method for controlled growth

07.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

Simple processing technique could cut cost of organic PV and wearable electronics

06.12.2016 | Materials Sciences

3-D printed kidney phantoms aid nuclear medicine dosing calibration

06.12.2016 | Medical Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>