Navigation Links
Blocking the critical structure that lets cancer cells move -- their feet
Date:12/16/2010

DURHAM, N.C. -- Scientists now know that some cancer cells spread, or metastasize, throughout the body the old-fashioned way -- by using their feet. But researchers at Duke Cancer Institute have discovered a way to short-circuit their travels by preventing the development of these feet, called invadopodia. This discovery is even more important because preventing the development of these "feet" also eliminates the action of proteins present in the feet that burn through intact tissue and let cancer cells enter new cells.

The results could yield a treatment to prevent the spread of cancer, which would be taken in combination with a treatment that kills the cancer cells, said Ann Marie Pendergast, Ph.D., senior author and James B. Duke Professor of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology at Duke. "A combination like this would be more effective than either treatment given alone."

"This is the first time anyone has identified the Abl family of protein kinases (comprising two proteins, Abl and Arg) as critical regulators of invadopodia structures," Pendergast said. "This has never been seen before."

The study was published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry on Dec. 17.

The team found that the Abl and Arg kinases are required not only for the formation and function of the invadopodia, but also that these kinases are found within these structures. "Thus, if we can find a way to block the kinases, we'll find a way to keep the feet from forming correctly and will keep the cells from moving," Pendergast said.

The researchers also made a new connection between these Abl and Arg kinases and the regulation of a Matrix Metalloproteinase (MMP) that is very important in cancer invasion and metastasis. "When you lose the functions of the Abl and Arg kinases, you also lose the function of the MMP proteins, which 'chew' through the matrix surrounding cells and tissues," Pendergast said. The MMP proteins can create openings for cancerous cells to escape through on their way to becoming a metastasis, she said.

The studies began because the researchers knew that Abl kinases can directly connect with actin, a filament-like protein that cells use to move. These kinases also seem to target a number of actin-regulatory proteins that are found in invadopodia, "so we thought it might be interesting to see what would happen if we blocked the activity of these kinases," Pendergast said. "We expected a mild effect, but were surprised by the striking effect we saw."

Using fluorescent proteins for imaging purposes, the team observed that when the kinase activity was blocked, the cancer cell "feet" then disappeared as well.

Pendergast said the pharmacologic agents used to block the Abl kinases are FDA-approved for use in leukemia (imatinib), which means it may not be hard to win their approval for new applications.


'/>"/>

Contact: Mary Jane Gore
mary.gore@duke.edu
919-660-1309
Duke University Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Caltech scientists show why anti-HIV antibodies are ineffective at blocking infection
2. Blocking cell movement for cancer, MS treatment
3. Blocking cancer in its path: New cellular defect discovered
4. How blocking the Programmed Death 1 protein may treat or prevent sepsis and severe infection
5. Cranberry juice shows promise blocking Staph infections
6. Tiny RNA molecules control labor, may be key to blocking premature birth
7. 6 environmental research studies reveal critical health risks from plastic
8. Circadian clock may be critical for remembering what you learn, Stanford researchers say
9. Repairing DNA damage: Researchers discover critical process in cancer treatment
10. Research shows cells inactive state is critical for effectiveness of cancer treatment
11. Protein that regulates hormones critical to womens health found in pituitary
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/24/2016)... Calif. , May 24, 2016 Ampronix facilitates superior patient care by ... LMD3251MT  3D medical LCD display is the latest premium product recently added to the ... ... ... Sony 3d Imaging- LCD Medical Display- Ampronix News ...
(Date:5/16/2016)... YORK , May 16, 2016   EyeLock ... solutions, today announced the opening of an IoT Center ... to strengthen and expand the development of embedded iris ... an unprecedented level of convenience and security with unmatched ... authenticate one,s identity aside from DNA. EyeLock,s platform uses ...
(Date:5/9/2016)... , UAE, May 9, 2016 ... when it comes to expanding freedom for high net ... Even in today,s globally connected world, there is ... conferencing system could ever duplicate sealing your deal with ... obtaining second passports by taking advantage of citizenship via ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... UAS ... the launch of their brand, UP4™ Probiotics, into Target stores nationwide. The company, ... proud to add Target to its list of well-respected retailers. This list includes ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 Houston Methodist Willowbrook Hospital has ... Association to serve as their official health care ... Willowbrook will provide sponsorship support, athletic training services, ... coaches, volunteers, athletes and families. "We ... Association and to bring Houston Methodist quality services ...
(Date:6/23/2016)...   EpiBiome , a precision microbiome engineering company, ... financing from Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). The financing will ... its drug development efforts, as well as purchase additional ... has been an incredible strategic partner to us – ... would provide," said Dr. Aeron Tynes Hammack , ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced positive ... its complement C3 inhibitor, APL-2. The trials were ... studies designed to assess the safety, tolerability, pharmacokinetics ... healthy adult volunteers. Forty subjects were ... dose (ranging from 45 to 1,440mg) or repeated ...
Breaking Biology Technology: