Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Cancer researchers investigate ‘smoking gun’ trail

10.10.2007
The University of Leicester has been selected as the hub of a worldwide network of researchers to investigate one of the causes of cancer.

The study into the ‘smoking gun’ trail of devastation caused to the body by substances known as ‘free radicals’ will also impact on our understanding of heart disease, neurodegenerative disease and arthritis.

Dr Marcus Cooke, Senior lecturer in the Radiation and Oxidative Stress Section at the University of Leicester, said: “Most of us have heard of free radicals, and the benefits of antioxidants which mop them up - even if it is just from cosmetics commercials“.

“However, premature aging is just the tip of the iceberg for their detrimental effects. Free radicals have been implicated in many diseases. They are arguably the most prevalent cancer causing chemicals known.

“Free radicals are highly reactive, and can cause widespread damage to cells, and in particular DNA - the cell's blueprint. Whilst it is very difficult to measure free radicals themselves, we can measure this damage as a 'smoking gun' signature of free radical activity.

“Being able to accurately and sensitively measure this damage will allow us to:

get a better understanding of the role of this damage in disease
develop assays to determine disease risk, by measuring cell damage
design strategies to prevent, or encourage repair, of this damage, and hence prevent disease

“This research is particularly important because it provides validated, non-invasive methods for assessing oxidative stress in humans. Being non-invasive this is ideal for looking in young and old patients.

“It will allow us to develop reference ranges to identify what levels of damage in urine are normal, or abnormal, for clinical application and to develop disease risk/prognostic tests.”

Dr. Cooke has been made PI of a project (Euros 45k) to undertake the Europe-wide validation of a urinary biomarker of oxidative stress.

This is one of two studies where Leicester is playing a lead role. Dr. Mark D. Evans is the Principal Investigator in a Euros 60k study to better understand the sources of biomarkers of oxidative stress in urine.

Both projects are spin-offs from a larger Euros 11 million EU Network of Excellence grant (Environment, Cancer, Nutrition and Individual Susceptibility, ECNIS, www.ecnis.org) of which Professor Peter Farmer, of the Department of Cancer Studies and Molecular Medicine, is the project lead at Leicester. (see link at end of release)

Dr Evans said: “These are projects addressing fundamental questions that have been, for the most part, overlooked. Being awarded these two complimentary projects, back-to-back gives us the unique opportunity to address questions that we, and others in the scientific community, have wanted to examine for many years. Likewise, this project incorporates worldwide collaborations between Leicester, Collegium Medicum in Bydgoszcz, Poland; DKFZ (the German Cancer Institute), Heidelberg, Germany; Institute of Cancer Research Sutton, U.K; Medical Institute of Bioregulation, Fukuoka, Japan; and Department of Toxicogenetics, University of Leiden, The Netherlands.

Dr Cooke said: “This is a further reflection of the international status of our group within the free radical and biomonitoring community. Through these projects, we are working closely with many of the top research institutes worldwide.”

Dr Cooke said Leicester would act as the hub of a worldwide network of more than 17 laboratories comparing methods of measuring damage to DNA, in urine: “Once we have agreement between methods, we can apply these methods to the study of DNA damage in disease.

The funding has allowed the formation of the European Standards Committee for Urinary (DNA) Lesion Analysis (ESCULA; http://escula.org), which involves researchers from around the world, including industrial collaborators.

Ather Mirza | alfa
Further information:
http://www.le.ac.uk

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht New High-Performance Center Translational Medical Engineering
26.04.2017 | Fraunhofer ITEM

nachricht A promising target for kidney fibrosis
21.04.2017 | Brigham and Women's Hospital

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: 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

Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air

26.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ammonium nitrogen input increases the synthesis of anticarcinogenic compounds in broccoli

26.04.2017 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

SwRI-led team discovers lull in Mars' giant impact history

26.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>