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 Electrical 'switch' in brain's capillary network monitors activity and controls blood flow
27.03.2017 | Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont

nachricht Laser activated gold pyramids could deliver drugs, DNA into cells without harm
24.03.2017 | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences

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: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

Im Focus: Researchers Imitate Molecular Crowding in Cells

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to simulate these confined natural conditions in artificial vesicles for the first time. As reported in the academic journal Small, the results are offering better insight into the development of nanoreactors and artificial organelles.

Enzymes behave differently in a test tube compared with the molecular scrum of a living cell. Chemists from the University of Basel have now been able to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Northern oceans pumped CO2 into the atmosphere

27.03.2017 | Earth Sciences

Fingerprint' technique spots frog populations at risk from pollution

27.03.2017 | Life Sciences

Big data approach to predict protein structure

27.03.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>