Navigation Links
Some brain tumors mimic the genetic program of germline cells

Scientists at IRB Barcelona have discovered that some brain tumours in larvae of the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster use the genetic programme of germline cells to grow. The removal of some of these genes leads to healthy brains. This finding demonstrates that these genes are crucial for tumour development. The study, headed by ICREA researcher Cayetano Gonzlez, is published today in the prestigious journal Science.

One of the characteristics of tumour cells is their immortality, a property that allows them to divide without obeying external signals. As a result, tissue masses form, which, in most cases, interfere with organ functions. Data collected in recent years reveal than many human tumours activate specific genes of the germinal cell line those specialized in spermatozoids or ovules -, which is thought to allow them greater and longer viability. However, the role of these genes in tumour development remains to be established. In this study, the scientists showed for the first time that silencing some of these genes leads to the disappearance of tumours in the brain of the fruit fly.

Global analysis of gene expression in tumours

Not all cells use the same genes, but they make use of them depending on the function to be performed. This gene activation profile is what determines how cells divide and what they become specialized in, in the case they have not already done so. In this study the researchers have used DNA chip technology to monitor this gene activity in tumour cells and have compared it with healthy cells. For this purpose, they have analysed brain tumours induced by an alteration in the gene l[3]mbt in fruit fly larvae.

Analysis of the gene expression profiles indicates that these tumour cells activate a total of 102 genes that are not activated in healthy cells. When the researchers examined the functions of these genes they observed that, in many cases, they were unknown, although 25% of them were responsible for functions related to germline cells. "These results show that these tumours mimic the gene expression profiles of germline cells", explains Ana Janic, first author of the study and PhD student in Gonzlez's lab.

Germline genes contribute to tumour growth

When the scientists studied the possible role of these specific genes of the germinal cell line in tumour expansion, they observed that by the silencing four lead to the development of healthy brains. "These experiments demonstrate that these genes are crucial for the development of this kind of tumour", states Janic.

Data collected over the last ten years indicate that the cancer cells of some tumours, such as melanomas and some kinds of carcinoma, activate genes of the germinal cell line. One possible diagnostic approach derived from these studies would be to use some of the proteins produced by these genes as tumour cell markers. In this context, the use of these proteins to make cancer vaccines is of particular relevance. This study sheds new light on the role of these proteins in the pathogenesis of cancer and opens up the way for new lines of research for the development of treatment against this disease in humans.


Contact: Nuria Noriega
Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona)

Related biology news :

1. Penn biophysicists create new model for protein-cholesterol interactions in brain and muscle tissue
2. During exercise, the human brain shifts into high gear on alternative energy
3. Millisecond brain signals predict response to fast-acting antidepressant
4. Food for thought -- regulating energy supply to the brain during fasting
5. Risk and reward compete in brain
6. Brainy genes, not brawn, key to success on mussel beach
7. Brain-nourishing molecule may predict schizophrenia relapse
8. Brain structure provides key to unraveling function of bizarre dinosaur crests
9. MU brain imaging center provides research for autism, schizophrenia and Parkinsons disease
10. Key to function of dinosaur crests found in brain structure
11. Emotion and scent create lasting memories -- even in a sleeping brain
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/15/2016)... June 15, 2016 Transparency ... titled "Gesture Recognition Market by Application Market - Global Industry Analysis ... 2024". According to the report, the  global gesture recognition ... 2015 and is estimated to grow at a ... by 2024.  Increasing application of gesture ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... 2016 The Department of Transport Management ... 44 million US Dollar project, for the , ... Personalization, Enrolment, and IT Infrastructure , to ... and implementation of Identity Management Solutions. Numerous renowned international vendors ... Decatur was selected for the most compliant and ...
(Date:5/20/2016)... 2016  VoiceIt is excited to announce its ... By working together, VoiceIt and VoicePass will ... VoicePass take slightly different approaches to voice biometrics, ... and usability. ... partnership. "This marketing and technology partnership ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - FACIT has announced the ... biotechnology company, Propellon Therapeutics Inc. ("Propellon" or ... of a portfolio of first-in-class WDR5 inhibitors for ... as WDR5 represent an exciting class of therapies, ... medicine for cancer patients. Substantial advances have been ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... -- The Biodesign Challenge (BDC), a university competition that asks ... systems and biotechnology, announced its winning teams at the ... York City . The teams, chosen ... MoMA,s Celeste Bartos Theater during the daylong summit. Keynote ... of architecture and design, and Suzanne Lee , ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today ... trials of its complement C3 inhibitor, APL-2. The ... ascending dose studies designed to assess the safety, ... injection in healthy adult volunteers. Forty ... a single dose (ranging from 45 to 1,440mg) ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Pleasant Prairie, WI (PRWEB) , ... June 23, ... ... sciences consultancy focused on quality, regulatory and technical consulting, provides a free ... webinar is presented on July 13, 2016 at 12pm CT at no charge. ...
Breaking Biology Technology: