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:9/15/2018)... ... September 14, 2018 , ... ... This campaign will showcase the innovative work being done within rare diseases research, ... therapies for those living with rare diseases. , The print ...
(Date:9/12/2018)... ... September 12, 2018 , ... Captiva Spine, Inc., which designs, ... received 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to market ... , TowerLOX-EXT MIS Extended Tab Pedicle Screws provide the narrow insertion of an ...
(Date:9/1/2018)... ... ... Right this minute, Frenchman Ben Lecomte is hard at work on his second ocean crossing. ... a new challenge: going from Tokyo to San Francisco, churning his limbs eight hours a ... boat. As the first expedition of its kind, The Swim is far more than just ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:9/7/2018)... , ... September 06, 2018 , ... ... compliance and commercialization, is releasing the agenda for its upcoming user conference. ... science industries discussing the latest challenges, opportunities, and approaches to regulatory compliance and ...
(Date:9/7/2018)... (PRWEB) , ... September 06, 2018 , ... Akadeum Life ... has spent his career as an executive and leader of numerous biotech companies. ... cell therapy and biologics company acquired by Thompson Street Capital in St. Louis, MO. ...
(Date:8/31/2018)... ASTORIA, Ore. (PRWEB) , ... August 29, 2018 ... ... holding Associate Professorships at both the University of Southampton and the Institute of ... and artificial intelligence at sea can dramatically accelerate the exploration and study of ...
(Date:8/29/2018)... CARMEL, Ind. (PRWEB) , ... August 28, 2018 ... ... company selling nano-technology enhanced spinal implants, announced today the successful completion of a ... 1st Source Capital Corporation, Purdue’s Foundry Investment Fund, Commenda Capital, and Ellipsis Ventures. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: