Navigation Links
Yale researchers explain why cancer 'smart drugs' may not be so smart
Date:5/11/2011

Some of the most effective and expensive cancer drugs, dubbed "smart drugs" for their ability to stop tumors by targeting key drivers of cancer cell growth, are not effective in some patients. In two related studies, Yale School of Medicine researchers examined one such driver, the EGF receptor (EGFR), and found that a decoy receptor might be limiting the amount of drug that gets to the intended target.

"We know that smart drugs like Cetuximab are not always effective in the cancer cells they're supposed to target because there are no positive predictive markers for selecting the patients who will benefit from treatment with EGFR-targeted therapies, including EGFR itself," said lead author Nita Maihle, professor in the Departments of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences and of Pathology at Yale School of Medicine. "Why would a patient be given an expensive drug if it doesn't work? Our studies provide new insight into this paradoxical EGFR testing conundrum."

In a study published recently in the journal Cancer, Maihle and her team isolated a protein from human blood that looks like EGFR, but is actually a closely related variant called serum sEGFR. They showed that Cetuximab binds equally as well to serum sEGFR as it does to the intended EGFR cancer target.

Those study results showed that sEGFR might act as a decoy receptor in the blood of cancer patients, tying up Cetuximab and therefore limiting the amount of Cetuximab that actually gets to the intended target.

Such limitations may, in part, provide an explanation for the failure of two large phase III clinical trials on Cetuximab in colorectal cancer patients, since serum sEGFR concentrations are highly variable in cancer patients. These studies suggest that serum sEGFR should be measured and considered prior to treatment with Cetuximab. Other research has supported this concept by showing that serum sEGFR concentration changes in response to treatment with Cetuximab.

In their second related study, published online in the current issue of the journal Biochemistry, Maihle and her team show that newly developed reagents to measure sEGFR in blood and other human tissues can detect a second unrelated cell surface protein in tumor cells: alpha-5 integrin.

"This important finding suggests that the naturally occurring sEGFR protein may play a complex role in cell adhesion and migrationtwo cellular processes important in the spread of cancer," said Maihle, who is a member of Yale Cancer Center. "Together these studies demonstrate an unanticipated level of complexity in EGFR signaling and assay development, and suggest new ways to overcome current challenges associated with clinical testing for this important cancer target."


'/>"/>

Contact: Karen N. Peart
karen.peart@hotmail.com
203-432-1326
Yale University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Reforesting rural lands in China pays big dividends, Stanford researchers say
2. Chemistry researchers receive patent for new scientific measurement instrument
3. USDA researchers, collaborators sequence genomes of fungi that threaten wheat, poplars
4. Researchers get new view of how water and sulfur dioxide mix
5. OGI genomics researchers awarded $23 million
6. Columbia researchers find green roof is a cost-effective way to keep water out of sewers
7. Einstein researchers find key gene in childhood cancer
8. Researchers show heparan sulfate adjusts functions of growth factor proteins
9. Penn researchers develop technique for measuring stressed molecules in cells
10. Researchers see a picture of threat in the brain: Work may lead to new model of neuroinflammation
11. Researchers join forces to cure deadly childhood disease
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/16/2017)... 2017   Bridge Patient Portal , an ... MD EMR Systems , an electronic medical record ... have established a partnership to build an interface ... GE Centricity™ products, including Centricity Practice Solution (CPS), ... These new integrations will allow healthcare delivery networks ...
(Date:4/18/2017)... 2017  Socionext Inc., a global expert in SoC-based imaging and ... the M820, which features the company,s hybrid codec technology. A demonstration ... Probe, Inc., will be showcased during the upcoming Medtec Japan at ... the Las Vegas Convention Center April 24-27. ... Click here for an ...
(Date:4/11/2017)... Fla. , April 11, 2017 ... and secure authentication solutions, today announced that it ... Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) to develop ... Thor program. "Innovation has been a ... IARPA,s Thor program will allow us to innovate ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... DuPont Pioneer and ... they have entered into a multiyear collaboration to identify and characterize novel CRISPR-Cas ... tools for gene editing across all applications. , Under the terms of the ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... Charlotte, N.C. (PRWEB) , ... October 11, 2017 ... ... ARCS® Foundation President Andi Purple announced Dr. Suneel I. Sheikh, the ... Laboratories ( ASTER Labs ), Inc. has been selected for membership in ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... 2017  VMS BioMarketing, a leading provider of patient support ... Nurse Educator (CNE) network, which will launch this week. The ... health care professionals to enhance the patient care experience by ... other health care professionals to help women who have been ... ...
(Date:10/10/2017)... ... 10, 2017 , ... San Diego-based team building and cooking events company, Lajollacooks4u, ... The bold new look is part of a transformation to increase awareness, appeal ... growth period. , It will also expand its service offering from its signature gourmet ...
Breaking Biology Technology: