Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

UIC chemists identify compound that inhibits cell migration

23.10.2002


A high-throughput assay developed by University of Illinois at Chicago chemists has led to discovery of a small organic compound that shows the unusual ability to inhibit cell migration. The new compound, identified as UIC-1005, may play a role in developing new kinds of cancer drugs.



The findings are published in the November issue of the journal ChemBioChem.

"We’ve been looking for chemical compounds that slow the process of cell migration," said Gabriel Fenteany, assistant professor of chemistry and the study’s principal author. "The process is poorly understood and has a lot of therapeutic potential."


Fenteany is also part of the UIC Cancer Center.

Fenteany and his co-workers grow skin-like epithelial cell sheets on tissue culture plates with many small depressions, or wells, each of which contains a culture of cells and a different chemical compound, providing the basis for the assay.

"We grow these cells and make little scratches in the resulting sheet of cells," Fenteany said. "A little gap forms, and cells move in to close that gap, similar to part of the wound healing process when you cut yourself.

"The process is also related to how a cancer cell will start to move to form a metastasis, and to how a tumor will recruit new blood vessels, which helps it grow," Fenteany said. "The phenomenon of cell shape change and movement is universal, even though details differ on how these cells move in different situations."

The assay developed by the UIC chemists makes the process to find molecules that inhibit cell movement quick and easy.

"We can easily screen a thousand compounds a day, or more," Fenteany said, adding, "We’re one of the few labs doing these sorts of screens. Therefore, there’s not really a good sense of what sorts of compounds will inhibit the process. That’s what we’re looking at."

Fenteany and his colleagues began their search using the high-throughput assay in December 2000 and discovered UIC-1005 a few months later. The new compound is from a class of molecules called oxazolidinones, which in recent years have been used successfully to develop new antibiotics that kill bacteria now resistant to older drugs. UIC-1005, however, shows no anti-bacterial properties and acts differently.

Fenteany hopes other labs adopt this high-throughput assay to hasten the discovery of additional molecules that inhibit cell migration. That search continues at UIC, along with work to modify the compound UIC-1005.

"Once you find the active structure, you can modify that structure to improve its activity, find out what it binds in the cell, and how," Fenteany said. "We’re working to find the protein it binds, and we have a candidate. Since the small molecule targets the protein and inhibits the process of cell movement, the protein becomes a potential target for drug development to block the pathway during disease."

Fenteany predicts drugs that inhibit cell migration may prove effective in combination therapies against cancer.

"A person who has had a tumor removed through surgery still faces the problem that some cancer cells escaped. By taking a cocktail of drugs, including anti-migratory compounds like UIC-1005 and other compounds we’ve yet to discover, the cancer could be more effectively contained. So even if not every cancer cell was removed by surgery or controlled in traditional chemotherapy, you’ve limited the ability of cells to move and spread and start new tumors."


Other authors are Arun Ghosh, professor of chemistry, and researchers Kevin McHenry and Sudha Ankala, all of UIC.

Funding for this research was by grants from UIC and the National Cancer Institute. Ongoing research is supported by a new grant from the American Cancer Society

Paul Francuch | EurekAlert!

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Protein linked to cancer acts as a viscous glue in cell division
08.07.2020 | Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

nachricht Enzymes as double agents: new mechanism discovered in protein modification
08.07.2020 | Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Excitation of robust materials

Kiel physics team observed extremely fast electronic changes in real time in a special material class

In physics, they are currently the subject of intensive research; in electronics, they could enable completely new functions. So-called topological materials...

Im Focus: Electrons in the fast lane

Solar cells based on perovskite compounds could soon make electricity generation from sunlight even more efficient and cheaper. The laboratory efficiency of these perovskite solar cells already exceeds that of the well-known silicon solar cells. An international team led by Stefan Weber from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) in Mainz has found microscopic structures in perovskite crystals that can guide the charge transport in the solar cell. Clever alignment of these "electron highways" could make perovskite solar cells even more powerful.

Solar cells convert sunlight into electricity. During this process, the electrons of the material inside the cell absorb the energy of the light....

Im Focus: The lightest electromagnetic shielding material in the world

Empa researchers have succeeded in applying aerogels to microelectronics: Aerogels based on cellulose nanofibers can effectively shield electromagnetic radiation over a wide frequency range – and they are unrivalled in terms of weight.

Electric motors and electronic devices generate electromagnetic fields that sometimes have to be shielded in order not to affect neighboring electronic...

Im Focus: Gentle wall contact – the right scenario for a fusion power plant

Quasi-continuous power exhaust developed as a wall-friendly method on ASDEX Upgrade

A promising operating mode for the plasma of a future power plant has been developed at the ASDEX Upgrade fusion device at Max Planck Institute for Plasma...

Im Focus: ILA Goes Digital – Automation & Production Technology for Adaptable Aircraft Production

Live event – July 1, 2020 - 11:00 to 11:45 (CET)
"Automation in Aerospace Industry @ Fraunhofer IFAM"

The Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials IFAM l Stade is presenting its forward-looking R&D portfolio for the first time at...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Contact Tracing Apps against COVID-19: German National Academy Leopoldina hosts international virtual panel discussion

07.07.2020 | Event News

International conference QuApps shows status quo of quantum technology

02.07.2020 | Event News

Dresden Nexus Conference 2020: Same Time, Virtual Format, Registration Opened

19.05.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

On-chip spin-Hall nanograting for simultaneously detecting phase and polarization singularities

08.07.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

Engineers use electricity to clean up toxic water

08.07.2020 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

Atomic 'Swiss army knife' precisely measures materials for quantum computers

08.07.2020 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>