New research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center shows how to stop both.
Specifically, cells signal themselves to survive, grow, reproduce, and migrate. Two years ago, researchers at the CU Cancer Center showed that turning off a family of signals made brain cancer cells less robust – it sensitized these previously resistant cells to chemotherapy.
But the second major problem – migration – potentially remained.
“I thought, aha, I have this great way to treat this cancer, but needed to check that we weren’t going to cause other problems. We wondered if turning off TAM family signaling would make brain cancer cells crawl away to a new spot where they might make new problems,” says Amy Keating, MD, investigator at the CU Cancer Center and senior author of the study, recently published in the journal Nature: Oncogene.
So Keating and colleagues went inside this TAM signaling family to explore how its members affect not only proliferation but migration. When they inhibited signaling through the other family member Axl, little changed (actually this was good: at least turning off this signaling pathway didn’t promote cancer cell migration).
But when Keating and colleagues turned off signaling through the Mer pathway, it was neither too hot nor too cold – it was just right, and these affected cancer cells were not only more sensitive to chemotherapy, but also unable to escape to safer areas of the brain.
Currently glioblastoma multiforme affects 45,000 people in the United States every year, the majority of whom will not survive 14 months after diagnosis.
“This represents a new targeted therapy, offering a potential new direction that nobody’s tried before,” says Keating, assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.
After these extremely promising results with cell lines, Keating and colleagues are currently testing the technology in mice, after which all involved hope to move soon to human clinical trials.
Amy Keating is generously supported by the St Baldrick’s Foundation and the NIH K12 HD068372Child Health Research Career Development Award.
Garth Sundem | EurekAlert!
Good preparation is half the digestion
15.11.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Stoffwechselforschung
How the gut ‘talks’ to brown fat
16.11.2018 | Technische Universität München
Biochips have been developed at TU Wien (Vienna), on which tissue can be produced and examined. This allows supplying the tissue with different substances in a very controlled way.
Cultivating human cells in the Petri dish is not a big challenge today. Producing artificial tissue, however, permeated by fine blood vessels, is a much more...
Faster and secure data communication: This is the goal of a new joint project involving physicists from the University of Würzburg. The German Federal Ministry of Education and Research funds the project with 14.8 million euro.
In our digital world data security and secure communication are becoming more and more important. Quantum communication is a promising approach to achieve...
On Saturday, 10 November 2018, the research icebreaker Polarstern will leave its homeport of Bremerhaven, bound for Cape Town, South Africa.
When choosing materials to make something, trade-offs need to be made between a host of properties, such as thickness, stiffness and weight. Depending on the application in question, finding just the right balance is the difference between success and failure
Now, a team of Penn Engineers has demonstrated a new material they call "nanocardboard," an ultrathin equivalent of corrugated paper cardboard. A square...
Physicists at ETH Zurich demonstrate how errors that occur during the manipulation of quantum system can be monitored and corrected on the fly
The field of quantum computation has seen tremendous progress in recent years. Bit by bit, quantum devices start to challenge conventional computers, at least...
09.11.2018 | Event News
06.11.2018 | Event News
23.10.2018 | Event News
15.11.2018 | Earth Sciences
15.11.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
15.11.2018 | Physics and Astronomy