Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Zinc transporters regulate pancreatic cancer

14.11.2007
Zinc, an important trace element for healthy growth and development, can be related to pancreatic cancer. Too much ZIP4, a molecule that enables the transport of zinc into cells, promotes the growth and spread of pancreatic tumors cells, said a group of researchers from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and the University of Florida in Gainesville, in a report which appears online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

“Zinc plays a critical role in our bodies functioning properly,” said Dr. Min Li, assistant professor of the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery at BCM, and lead author of the study. “Zinc must be regulated through proteins called zinc transporters to keep us healthy.”

A previous study by one of Li’s collaborators, Dr. Craig Logsdon, professor and Lockton Distinguished Professor for Pancreatic Cancer Research at M.D. Anderson, identified high levels of ZIP4 in pancreatic cancer tissue. Li’s current study confirmed those findings and also showed that overexpressed ZIP4 increases zinc uptake by the cell, which results in significantly increased tumor growth.

“We need to put these in a big picture and look at the zinc and zinc transporters as a whole in regulating pancreatic cancer growth. There is no simple answer at this point on the role zinc itself is playing,” said Li.

“This study shows strong evidence that the zinc transporter is over expressed in pancreatic cancer,” said Dr. Changyi (Johnny) Chen, Molecular Surgery Endowed Chair, professor of surgery and vice chair for research in the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery at BCM. “Our next step for research will ask why this happens in pancreatic cancer.”

Results showed that 16 of the 17 pancreatic cancer specimens and seven of the eight cell lines grown in the laboratory had higher levels of ZIP4 than healthy tissues and normal pancreatic ductal cells. Researchers then introduced ZIP4 protein into the one pancreatic cancer cell line that did not already over express the molecule. Compared to the original line, the new cells accumulated 73 percent more zinc and significantly increased tumor growth.

This is the first comprehensive study to focus on pancreatic cancer and zinc transporters which has not been previously described. More research is needed before doctors know if limiting or targeting zinc or ZIP4 would affect the progression of pancreatic cancer.

“This study has tremendous impact on pancreatic cancer research because it not only suggests a novel diagnostic marker, but also indicates a candidate for cancer vaccine development” said Dr. Qizhi (Cathy) Yao, professor of the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery and molecular virology & microbiology at BCM.

“Identifying this molecule as being related to tumor growth opens up a door for us, “said Logsdon. “Our hope is that this will lead to a target for new treatments and therapies.”

Graciela Gutierrez | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.bcm.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht How prenatal maternal infections may affect genetic factors in Autism spectrum disorder
22.03.2017 | University of California - San Diego

nachricht Camouflage apples
22.03.2017 | Empa - Eidgenössische Materialprüfungs- und Forschungsanstalt

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

Pulverizing electronic waste is green, clean -- and cold

22.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

Astronomers hazard a ride in a 'drifting carousel' to understand pulsating stars

22.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New gel-like coating beefs up the performance of lithium-sulfur batteries

22.03.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>