Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Researchers identify a gene responsible for spread of cancer in the body

03.03.2003


Researchers who are now at Georgetown University’s Lombardi Cancer Center have identified a gene that promotes metastases, the spread of cancer cells through the body. This new understanding of how cancer metastasizes, linking a gene product and migration of cancer cells, may lead to therapies to stop this spread. The results of the study are published in the May 2003 issue of the journal Molecular Biology of the Cell. An advance copy of the paper can be viewed after the embargo is lifted at http://www.molbiolcell.org/in_press.shtml



Richard G. Pestell, M.D., Ph.D. and his research team have been studying the cyclin D1 gene and the protein it produces for the past decade. Now they have found that by "knocking out" this gene, the migration of cells can be halted. The migration of cancer cells through the body is a major reason why cancer is deadly.

"Patients who do not survive their cancer, often don’t die from their primary cancer, usually they die from the spread of the disease through the body. If we can understand what causes the metastasis, then we can pinpoint new targets to block the spread of disease," said Dr. Pestell, director of the Lombardi Cancer Center, chairman of Georgetown’s Department of Oncology and Charlotte Gragnani professor of oncology. "Since cancerous -- but not normal epithelial cells -- migrate, therapy targeted to cell migration would be more selective. Killing only migrating cancer cells is thus less toxic, producing fewer side effects, than current chemotherapy which targets dividing cells of all types."


"We want to make the life journey a better one for people who have cancer," added Dr. Pestell, "and we at Lombardi are always trying to think of new approaches. Improving the quality of life for people with cancer is key. Slowing down the disease may change cancer from a fatal disease to one that can be lived with like diabetes."

The research was conducted at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York where Dr. Pestell worked prior to joining the Lombardi Cancer Center at Georgetown.

This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and the Department of Defense. Co-authors of this study are Peter Neumeister, Fiona J. Pixley, Ying Xiong, Huafeng Xie, Koming Wu, Anthony Ashton, Michael Cammer, Amanda Chan, Marc Symons, and E. Richard Stanley.

In their Lombardi laboratories, Dr. Pestell and his colleagues are currently attempting to "fine tune" exactly how cell migration differs from cell proliferation so they can devise targeted drug therapy to stop the spread of cancer through the body.

They are also exploring a stealth anticancer weapon. They reported in the December 2002 issue of the journal Chemistry & Biology on initial research on a new modality called caging therapy that targets single malignant cells. Unlike taking a pill that goes to all cells in the body, caging therapy uses light beams in an extremely specific approach to eradicating individual cancer cells. These findings, as well as the developments described in the Molecular Biology of the Cell paper, hold the potential of significantly improving quality of life for cancer patients through the development of less toxic treatment options.


The Lombardi Cancer Center, part of Georgetown University Medical Center and Georgetown University Hospital, seeks to improve the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of cancer through innovative basic and clinical research, patient care, community education and outreach, and the training of cancer specialists of the future. Lombardi is one of only 40 comprehensive cancer centers in the nation, as designated by the National Cancer Institute, and the only one in the Washington DC area.

Editorial note: The Molecular Biology of the Cell paper includes an electron microscope video of migrating cancer cells. This can be viewed from a link available at http://www.molbiolcell.org/in_press.shtml after noon on February 28.

Cindy Fox Aisen | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.molbiolcell.org/in_press.shtml

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht The genes are not to blame
20.07.2018 | Technische Universität München

nachricht Targeting headaches and tumors with nano-submarines
20.07.2018 | Universitätsmedizin der Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

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: Future electronic components to be printed like newspapers

A new manufacturing technique uses a process similar to newspaper printing to form smoother and more flexible metals for making ultrafast electronic devices.

The low-cost process, developed by Purdue University researchers, combines tools already used in industry for manufacturing metals on a large scale, but uses...

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

A smart safe rechargeable zinc ion battery based on sol-gel transition electrolytes

20.07.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Reversing cause and effect is no trouble for quantum computers

20.07.2018 | Information Technology

Princeton-UPenn research team finds physics treasure hidden in a wallpaper pattern

20.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>