Navigation Links
Cholesterol activates signaling pathway that promotes cancer
Date:7/15/2014

Everyone knows that cholesterol, at least the bad kind, can cause heart disease and hardening of the arteries. Now, researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago describe a new role for cholesterol in the activation of a cellular signaling pathway that has been linked to cancer.

The finding is reported in Nature Communications.

Cells employ thousands of signaling pathways to conduct their functions. Canonical Wnt signaling is a pathway that promotes cell growth and division and is most active in embryonic cells during development. Overactivity of this signaling pathway in mature cells is thought to be a major driver in the development of cancer.

"Our research points to a new regulatory role for cholesterol, and also presents an exciting new therapeutic target for suppressing canonical Wnt signaling to treat or prevent cancer," said Wonhwa Cho, professor of chemistry at UIC and principal investigator of the research.

Cho and his colleagues were searching for novel cholesterol-binding proteins when they discovered a binding site for cholesterol on a protein called Dishevelled. Dishevelled is involved in canonical Wnt signaling and in non-canonical Wnt signaling, which plays a role in processes like cell movement and organization. Dishevelled is like a switch on the track -- when the signal reaches Dishevelled, the signal is directed along either the canonical or non-canonical Wnt pathway. But until now, any factor governing activation of one pathway over the other was unknown, Cho said.

"Once we realized that cholesterol is able to bind specifically to Dishevelled, we became interested in cholesterol as a potential determinant of which of the Wnt signaling pathways gets activated," he said.

The researchers found that when cholesterol is bound to Dishevelled, the signal continues along the canonical Wnt signaling pathway. Without cholesterol, canonical Wnt signaling cannot occur.

They also noticed that localized increases in cholesterol within cell membrane seemed to selectively promote canonical Wnt signaling over non-canonical Wnt signaling -- a finding, Cho said, that might explain why elevated cholesterol increases cancer risk.

"We know that things like high-fat diets, which boost cholesterol levels, have been linked to an elevated incidence of cancer," he said. "Our research provides a mechanism for how cholesterol promotes pathways that lead to cancer."

It also presents a possible therapeutic target. A drug that interferes with the binding of cholesterol to Dishevelled, Cho said, may be effective against those cancers that are driven by canonical Wnt signaling -- a list that includes colon cancer, melanoma, breast cancer and lung cancer.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sharon Parmet
sparmet@uic.edu
312-413-2695
University of Illinois at Chicago
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Potential cholesterol lowering drug has breast cancer fighting capabilities
2. Fasting reduces cholesterol levels in prediabetic people over extended period of time
3. Summertime cholesterol consumption key for wintertime survival for Siberian hamsters
4. Common cholesterol drug greatly alters inflammatory response to common cold
5. Low cholesterol in immune cells tied to slow progression of HIV
6. Low cholesterol in immune cells slows HIV progression
7. Cholesterol transporter structure decoded
8. Cholesterol study suggests new diagnostic, treatment approach for prostate cancer
9. Strawberries lower cholesterol
10. Cleveland Clinic researchers discover process that turns good cholesterol bad
11. Wayne State cholesterol study shows algal extracts may counter effects of high fat diets
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Cholesterol activates signaling pathway that promotes cancer
(Date:5/3/2016)... May 3, 2016  Neurotechnology, a provider of ... MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification System (ABIS) , a ... projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can process multiple complex biometric ... combination of fingerprint, face or iris biometrics. It ... and MegaMatcher Accelerator , which have ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... -- Research and Markets has announced the ...  report to their offering.  , ,     (Logo: ... forecast the global multimodal biometrics market to grow ... 2016-2020.  Multimodal biometrics is being implemented ... healthcare, BFSI, transportation, automotive, and government for controlling ...
(Date:4/14/2016)... AVIV, Israel , April 14, 2016 ... Behavioral Authentication and Malware Detection, today announced the appointment ... already assumed the new role. Goldwerger,s leadership ... BioCatch, on the heels of the deployment of its ... addition, BioCatch,s behavioral biometric technology, which discerns unique cognitive ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/24/2016)... AVIV, Israel , May 24, 2016   MedyMatch ... providing physicians with artificial intelligence, real-time decision support tools in ... to present at the 2016 Israeli Advanced Technology Industries (IATI) ... of Israel,s 15th National Life Sciences ... 26th at the David Intercontinental Hotel in Tel ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... ... 24, 2016 , ... Media Cybernetics, global image analysis leader, ... branding reflects a results-driven revitalization for a company with a renewed focus on ... a crisp, refreshed logo and a new web presence. , “I believe that ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... ... May 23, 2016 , ... PrecisionAg® Media has released ... and Beyond. The paper outlines the key trends that are creating both opportunities ... witnessed a lot of highs and lows as the precision agriculture market has ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... May 23, 2016 Oxitec CEO ... at 10:15 a.m. ET before the United States House ... engineered mosquitos can play in controlling the spread of the ... Zika virus.      (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20150630/227348 ) ... with a self-limiting gene. Trials in Brazil ...
Breaking Biology Technology: