Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Wisconsin research team reveals novel way to treat drug-resistant brain tumor cells

04.06.2012
New research from the University of Wisconsin-Madison explains why the incurable brain cancer, glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), is highly resistant to current chemotherapies.

The study, from the brain-tumor research lab of Dr. John Kuo, assistant professor of neurological surgery and human oncology at UW School of Medicine and Public Health, also reports success for a combination therapy that knocks out signaling of multiple members of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) family in brain-cancer cells.

The late U.S. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy died of GBM in 2009. People diagnosed with GBM live on average for only 15 months after diagnosis, even after undergoing aggressive surgery, radiation and chemotherapy. Earlier research from Dr. Kuo and other scientists showed that GBM cancer stem cells escape current treatments and proliferate rapidly to cause tumor recurrence.

Several years ago, research suggested that a drug engineered to target EGFR signaling might work against GBM because many brain cancers carried EGFR mutations. Excessive and abnormal EGFR signaling spurs the growth of cancer cells. Although cetuximab, a monoclonal-antibody drug, was successful in clinical trials for patients with lung, colorectal, and head and neck cancers, it failed against GBM.

Research by Dr. Paul Clark, a scientist in Kuo's lab and the study's lead author, shows why. When cetuximab treatment switches off EGFR activity and should inhibit cancer-cell growth, cancer stem cells compensate by turning on two other EGFR family receptors (ERBB2 and ERBB3) and continue to grow. One of these receptors, ERBB2, is implicated in certain types of chemotherapy-resistant breast cancer. Fortunately, another novel drug already approved by the FDA, lapatinib, inhibits ERBB2 activity and signaling by multiple EGFR members.

This study shows that cancer stem-cell growth was markedly inhibited by lapatinib treatment, which results in combined knockout of multiple EGFR family members.

"This is good news, because these drugs target an important mechanism for the (GBM) cancer cells to grow so quickly and evade current therapies, and these molecularly targeted drugs are also well-tolerated by patients and have minimal side effects," Dr. Clark said.

Kuo, director of the Comprehensive Brain Tumor Program at UW Health and chair of the Carbone Cancer Center brain tumor group, said that results of several brain cancer clinical trials with these novel drugs and other new strategies are pending or underway.

Susan Lampert Smith | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.uwhealth.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Foods of the future
15.08.2018 | Georg-August-Universität Göttingen

nachricht New antibody analysis accelerates rational vaccine design
09.08.2018 | Scripps Research Institute

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: Unraveling the nature of 'whistlers' from space in the lab

A new study sheds light on how ultralow frequency radio waves and plasmas interact

Scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles present new research on a curious cosmic phenomenon known as "whistlers" -- very low frequency packets...

Im Focus: New interactive machine learning tool makes car designs more aerodynamic

Scientists develop first tool to use machine learning methods to compute flow around interactively designable 3D objects. Tool will be presented at this year’s prestigious SIGGRAPH conference.

When engineers or designers want to test the aerodynamic properties of the newly designed shape of a car, airplane, or other object, they would normally model...

Im Focus: Robots as 'pump attendants': TU Graz develops robot-controlled rapid charging system for e-vehicles

Researchers from TU Graz and their industry partners have unveiled a world first: the prototype of a robot-controlled, high-speed combined charging system (CCS) for electric vehicles that enables series charging of cars in various parking positions.

Global demand for electric vehicles is forecast to rise sharply: by 2025, the number of new vehicle registrations is expected to reach 25 million per year....

Im Focus: The “TRiC” to folding actin

Proteins must be folded correctly to fulfill their molecular functions in cells. Molecular assistants called chaperones help proteins exploit their inbuilt folding potential and reach the correct three-dimensional structure. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry (MPIB) have demonstrated that actin, the most abundant protein in higher developed cells, does not have the inbuilt potential to fold and instead requires special assistance to fold into its active state. The chaperone TRiC uses a previously undescribed mechanism to perform actin folding. The study was recently published in the journal Cell.

Actin is the most abundant protein in highly developed cells and has diverse functions in processes like cell stabilization, cell division and muscle...

Im Focus: Lining up surprising behaviors of superconductor with one of the world's strongest magnets

Scientists have discovered that the electrical resistance of a copper-oxide compound depends on the magnetic field in a very unusual way -- a finding that could help direct the search for materials that can perfectly conduct electricity at room temperatur

What happens when really powerful magnets--capable of producing magnetic fields nearly two million times stronger than Earth's--are applied to materials that...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Within reach of the Universe

08.08.2018 | Event News

A journey through the history of microscopy – new exhibition opens at the MDC

27.07.2018 | Event News

2018 Work Research Conference

25.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Unraveling the nature of 'whistlers' from space in the lab

15.08.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Diving robots find Antarctic winter seas exhale surprising amounts of carbon dioxide

15.08.2018 | Earth Sciences

Early opaque universe linked to galaxy scarcity

15.08.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>