Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Scientists identify possible therapy target for aggressive cancer

02.12.2009
UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers have found that a naturally occurring protein — transforming growth factor beta1 (TGF-ß1) — which normally suppresses the growth of cancer cells, causes a rebound effect after a prolonged exposure. Cancer cells go into overdrive and become even more aggressive and likely to spread, the researchers report.
The mechanism for this reversal is unknown, but UT Southwestern researchers and their colleagues in Indiana suspect that cancerous cells activate a defense mechanism in response to the lethal protein. This mechanism turns on a cascade of cancer-promoting genes.

But clinicians may be able to exploit this rebound for better treatments, said Dr. David Boothman, co-senior author of the study, available online today and appearing in the January issue of The Journal of Clinical Investigation.

“These genetic changes would start prior to metastases, so if we detect them early, we might be able to tailor treatment in anticipation of a more aggressive cancer,” said Dr. Boothman, a professor of radiation oncology and pharmacology and associate director of translational research in the Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center at UT Southwestern.

The study was conducted on cells from mice and in samples from women with metastatic breast cancer.

TGF-ß1 controls many cellular functions, including cell growth, cell proliferation and natural cell death. It also can act to suppress tumors and prevent cancers from spreading.

The researchers, including co-senior collaborator Dr. Lindsey Mayo from the Indiana University School of Medicine, examined a cascade of biochemical reactions in cells exposed to TGF-ß1. They suspected that prolonged exposure would turn on a particular cancer-causing gene, which in turn, activates other cancer-supporting reactions.

In tissue from women with metastatic breast cancer, 60 percent of the patients showed both TGF-ß1 action and high levels of the cancer-causing gene.

The team also looked at nutlin3, a protein that blocks the action of the cancer-causing gene. They found that nutlin3 blocks the cancer-boosting effects of long-term TGF-ß1 exposure, preventing metastasis and killing cancer cells. Further research will be needed to determine whether nutlin3 might be worth developing further as an anti-cancer drug, Dr. Boothman said.

In other studies, UT Southwestern researchers found similar effects in cells from colon and non-small cell lung cancers.

Other UT Southwestern researchers involved in the study included Dr. Shinako Araki, postdoctoral fellow in the Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center; Dr. Xian-Jin Xie, associate professor of clinical sciences and in the Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The study was supported by grants from the Department of Energy and the National Cancer Institute.

Visit www.utsouthwestern.org/cancercenter to learn more about UT Southwestern’s clinical services in cancer at UT Southwestern.

Media Contact: Connie Piloto
214-648-3404
conniepiloto@utsouthwestern.edu

Connie Piloto | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.utsouthwestern.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Organ-on-a-chip mimics heart's biomechanical properties
23.02.2017 | Vanderbilt University

nachricht Researchers identify cause of hereditary skeletal muscle disorder
22.02.2017 | Klinikum der Universität München

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: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>