Scientists have developed a new tool that may prove to be invaluable for investigating the long-term mutagenic effects of chemotherapy and radiation, therapies that are widely used for the treatment of cancer. The research study, published in the October issue of Cancer Cell, provides evidence that a genetically engineered mouse model faithfully recapitulates treatment-associated cancers that occur in humans and may be useful for investigating the mechanisms involved in the development of therapy-induced cancers and for testing preventive strategies.
Secondary malignant neoplasms (SMNs) are new cancers that patients develop as a result of having received chemotherapy or radiation to treat a different type of cancer that may have occurred years earlier. To make matters worse, many of these secondary cancers are notoriously resistant to treatment. The occurrence of SMNs is a serious concern for doctors and patients, as the use of intensive radiation and chemotherapy has been more successful in curing primary cancers and has dramatically increased survival rates in children and adults. Unfortunately, as a result of treatment success, the incidence of SMNs has also risen. "The lack of relevant animal models of SMNs has impeded efforts to understand how mutagenic cancer therapeutics induce tumors in vivo, and to test preventive strategies," explains study author Dr. Kevin Shannon, a pediatric oncologist at the University of California, San Francisco.
Dr. Shannon and colleagues used a strain of mice developed in the laboratory of Dr. Tyler Jacks that carry a mutation in a tumor suppressor gene called Nf1. They selected this strain based on clinical data suggesting that humans who inherit this mutation are predisposed to SMNs. Nf1 mutant mice that were exposed to radiation, or radiation combined with chemotherapy, developed secondary cancers that are common in humans including leukemia, sarcoma, and breast cancers. "These animals develop a similar spectrum of malignancies as human patients who are treated with radiation and alkylating agents, and provide a tractable system for performing mechanistic studies, for comparing the mutagenic potential of different regimens, and for testing preventive strategies," offers Dr. Shannon. The study authors also suggest that this mouse model may be useful for testing novel therapeutic strategies for tumors that are resistant to conventional cancer therapies.
New malaria analysis method reveals disease severity in minutes
14.08.2017 | University of British Columbia
New type of blood cells work as indicators of autoimmunity
14.08.2017 | Instituto de Medicina Molecular
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
16.08.2017 | Event News
04.08.2017 | Event News
26.07.2017 | Event News
18.08.2017 | Life Sciences
18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences