Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Notorious cancer gene may work by destroying messenger

21.03.2007
A new study suggests how a notorious cancer gene may contribute to tumor growth.

The insight emerged from a long-running study of a protein called PMR1, the key player in an unusual mechanism that cells use to quickly stop production of certain important proteins.

Researchers discovered that PMR1 is activated – or “turned on – by another molecule, an energy-packing protein called Src (pronounced “sark”).

Discovered in 1977, Src became the first “oncogene” – mutated genes that help make cells cancerous. Oncogenes are altered forms of genes that control cell growth and cell division.

These findings provide insight into how Src might contribute to cancer development.
... more about:
»Cancer »Control »PMR1 »SRC »Schoenberg »mRNA

The study by researchers with the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center is published in the March 9 issue of the journal Molecular Cell.

“The link between Src and cancer was discovered 30 years ago, but to this day, we still don't know its exact role in tumor development,” says principal investigator Daniel R. Schoenberg, professor of molecular and cellular biochemistry.

“Our data suggest that Src may promote cancer by causing PMR1 to halt production of proteins that normally put the brakes on cell growth – tumor-suppressor proteins, for example, or other growth-regulating proteins.”

In healthy cells, Src helps control cell proliferation, differentiation, survival and movement. Mutated Src is found in about half of all colon, liver, lung, breast and pancreatic tumors, and the amount of Src can be significantly higher in cancer cells compared to normal cells.

Earlier research led by Schoenberg found that PMR1 helps control protein production by destroying particular messenger RNAs (mRNAs), molecules that carry the information used to assemble a protein.

That work showed that PMR1 attaches to the mRNAs and remains there as a silent passenger. If it receives the proper signal, however, the protein chops up and destroys the mRNA, which instantly stops production of that protein.

Cells use that mechanism to control the production of proteins such as growth factors, which activate genes in response to a hormone or other signal.

PMR1 also plays a key role in Cooley's anemia, which causes the loss of red blood cells in infants and children.

For the present study, Schoenberg and coauthor Yong Peng, a research associate in Schoenberg's laboratory, wanted to learn how PMR1 is activated to attach to mRNAs.

They found that activation occurs when PMR1 is momentarily joined by an unidentified enzyme. Contact with this enzyme changes the properties of PMR1, and this enables it to join with, or bind to, its target mRNA.

Peng then used monoclonal antibodies to isolate PMR1 and the enzyme while the two were bound together, capturing both. After separating the two, the investigators identified the enzyme as Src, which is a member of a large family of molecules called tyrosine kinases. These molecules act like switches that turn other molecules on and off, including PMR1.

“That's the real excitement about this paper,” Schoenberg says. “We came at this with an interest in mRNA decay, and we may have stumbled across a fundamental mechanism of cancer.”

Next, Schoenberg and his associates Xiaoqiang Liu and Elizabeth Murray will use three cancer-cell lines to try to identify what messenger RNAs – which will also tell them what proteins – are targeted and destroyed by PMR1.

“That will help tell us whether Src works through PMR1 to contribute to cancer,” Schoenberg says.

Funding from the National Institute for General Medical Sciences supported this research.

Darrell E. Ward | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.osumc.edu

Further reports about: Cancer Control PMR1 SRC Schoenberg mRNA

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Bioenergy cropland expansion could be as bad for biodiversity as climate change
11.12.2018 | Senckenberg Forschungsinstitut und Naturmuseen

nachricht How glial cells develop in the brain from neural precursor cells
11.12.2018 | Universitätsmedizin der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

Im Focus: Researchers develop method to transfer entire 2D circuits to any smooth surface

What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.

Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...

Im Focus: Three components on one chip

Scientists at the University of Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) succeed in important further development on the way to quantum Computers.

Quantum computers one day should be able to solve certain computing problems much faster than a classical computer. One of the most promising approaches is...

Im Focus: Substitute for rare earth metal oxides

New Project SNAPSTER: Novel luminescent materials by encapsulating phosphorescent metal clusters with organic liquid crystals

Nowadays energy conversion in lighting and optoelectronic devices requires the use of rare earth oxides.

Im Focus: A bit of a stretch... material that thickens as it's pulled

Scientists have discovered the first synthetic material that becomes thicker - at the molecular level - as it is stretched.

Researchers led by Dr Devesh Mistry from the University of Leeds discovered a new non-porous material that has unique and inherent "auxetic" stretching...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

Expert Panel on the Future of HPC in Engineering

03.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Electronic evidence of non-Fermi liquid behaviors in an iron-based superconductor

11.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Topological material switched off and on for the first time

11.12.2018 | Materials Sciences

NIST's antenna evaluation method could help boost 5G network capacity and cut costs

11.12.2018 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>