Navigation Links
Researcher uncovers details of how cancer spreads

When cancer spreads, people often die. That's why a lot of cancer research and drugs focus on the metabolic pathways that allow cancer to metastasize -- to spread from one part of the body to another.

Cornell University researchers have now furthered understanding of how these pathways work. Their insights might aid future research on drug therapies that disrupt the sequence of events that lead to metastasis.

A study published in the journal Developmental Cell (Vol. 9, August 2005) reveals how connective tissue holding a cancer cell in place might degrade, unmooring the diseased cell and allowing it to spread to other parts of the body.

"We have identified a pathway that is specific for cancer," said Jun-Lin Guan, a professor in the Department of Molecular Medicine in the College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell and an author of the paper. "So from here, if someone identifies a drug that targets this pathway, it is possible the drug will not affect normal cell function but will affect cancer cell activity." That, in turn, would alleviate drug side effects.

Guan and his colleagues used a cultured cell line to study cancer, which are mouse cells grown in the lab for research purposes. The researchers used these cells to create a model system for cancer cells, which means its basic pathway exists in real-world systems, while the actual proteins that act on the system may vary.

In the model system, the researchers discovered critical differences between cancer cells and normal cells regarding a mechanism called endocytosis -- which cells employ to let materials enter through the cell membrane.

The researchers used a protein called v-Src derived from an oncogenic virus, which has the ability to transform a normal cell into one with many features resembling those found in cancer cells. While this virus has not been found in humans, it does lead to tumor growth in chickens and created cancerous cells in the cultured system. I n the study, the researchers found that v-Src attaches to an enzyme, called focal adhesion kinase, inside the cell. This association jump-starts a series of cascading interactions between proteins in the cell that ultimately block some cell-surface proteins from entering through the cell's membrane.

One of the proteins not allowed entry is called MT1-MMP. As this material accumulates on the cell surface, it degrades the connective tissue that holds the cancerous cell in place. The build-up of MT1-MMP also activates an enzyme called MMP2, which further degrades the connective tissue. In this way, the cancer cell loses its moorings and can float off to spread around the body. While no one has found v-Src in human cancer patients, a number of other cancers have been linked to viruses, including the herpes virus and its association with cervical cancer.

"Critics of this work will ask why v-Src has not been found in human cancer," said Guan. "But there are many examples of studies and ideas that come out of work like this that stimulate related research with clinical impacts.

"We looked at a relatively late stage of cancer and its spread within the body," Guan added. "The spreading part is less well understood, and it's the spreading that is killing people."


'"/>

Source:Cornell University News Service


Related biology news :

1. Researchers discover way to make cells in the eye sensitive to light
2. Researchers find how protein allows insects to detect and respond to pheromones
3. Researchers Uncover Key Step In Manufacture of Memory Protein
4. Researchers reveal the infectious impact of salmon farms on wild salmon
5. Researchers identify target for cancer drugs
6. Researchers discover molecule that causes secondary stroke
7. Researchers find missing genes of ancient organism
8. Researchers trace evolution to relatively simple genetic changes
9. Researchers add new tool to tumor-treatment arsenal
10. UF Researchers Map Bacterial Proteins That Cause Tooth Loss
11. VCU Researchers Identify Networks Of Genes Responding To Alcohol In The Brain
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:2/1/2016)... , Feb. 1, 2016  Today, the first ... (AHA) announced plans to develop a first of its ... power of IBM Watson. In the first application of ... IBM (NYSE: IBM ), and Welltok will create ... health assessments with cognitive analytics, delivered on Welltok,s health ...
(Date:1/27/2016)... Jan. 27, 2016  Rite Track, Inc. a leading ... West Chester, Ohio announced today the ... staff, based in Austin, Texas , ... to provide modifications, installations and technical support offerings for ... of PLUS, commented, "PLUS has provided world class service ...
(Date:1/22/2016)... , January 22, 2016 ... the addition of the  "Global Behavioral ... offering. --> http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/4lmf2s/global_behavioral ) ... "Global Behavioral Biometric Market 2016-2020"  report ... Research and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/4lmf2s/global_behavioral ) has ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... Febr. 10, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - BioAmber Inc. (NYSE: BIOA ... announce that Mitsui & Co. Ltd., its partner in ... plant, is investing an additional CDN$25 million in the ... stake from 30% to 40%.  Mitsui will also play ... produced in Sarnia , providing dedicated ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... , ... February 10, 2016 ... ... today announced that it has joined the Human Vaccines Project, a public-private ... diseases and cancer. , The Human Vaccines Project brings together leading ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... February 10, 2016 , ... HOLLOWAY AMERICA, ... Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE) Rocky Mountain Chapter 21st Annual Vendor Exhibition on Thursday, February ... than 100 tables for its annual event, which will run from 3:00 p.m. ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Miami, FL (PRWEB) , ... February 10, 2016 ... ... leader in regenerative medicine, has announced a new agreement with Singapore-based Global Stem ... qualified physicians from the Philippines, Thailand and Singapore in the latest adipose and ...
Breaking Biology Technology: