Researchers led by Dean Felsher at Stanford University School of Medicine, and bioengineers at Cell Biosciences in Palo Alto, collaborated to develop an automated, high-throughput, nano-fluidic system that was able to measure the levels of three oncoproteins: MYC, BCL2, and AKT, in tiny samples drawn as very fine needle aspirates from hematopoetic tumor cells in preclinical transgenic mouse models. The nano-fluidic system physically separates the proteins in very small capillary tubes and then uses antibodies for protein detection. It was also tested on human lymphoma samples.
In previous work, the Felsher group had shown that inactivating MYC induces sustained tumor regression in mice. The researchers decided to test their conditional model of MYC-induced lymphoma by using their nano-fluidic system to quickly measure the impact of targeted protein inhibitors in mice. A series of fine needle-aspirated samples was analyzed, confirming a decrease in oncoprotein levels.
The new nano-fluidic system was also tested on human tumors by measuring the levels of MYC, BCL2, ERK, and AKT proteins in the lymph nodes obtained from patients with Burkitt’s, mantle cell, or follicular lymphoma. The nano-fluidic system reported that MYC was overexpressed in Burkitt’s, while BCL2 was overexpressed in mantle cell and follicular lymphoma patients. In parallel, traditional Western blots were performed to confirm BCL-2 and MYC levels.
"Our strategy can be used to repetitively and quickly assess the levels of oncopro
teins in cancer cells grown in the laboratory and in human patients," says Felsher. "It may prove useful for the early detection of cancer, and for monitoring patients?responses during their treatment, allowing clinicians to tailor treatments to individual patients. Finally, we provide a high throughput method to identify if new cancer drugs are effective at targeting specific oncoproteins."
Source:American Society for Cell Biology
Related biology news :
1. Viral DNA sequence a possible trigger for breast cancer
2. Enzyme, lost in most mammals, is shown to protect against UV-induced skin cancer
3. Its not all genetic: Common epigenetic problem doubles cancer risk in mice
4. Columbia research lifts major hurdle to gene therapy for cancer
5. Combination therapy boosts effectiveness of telomere-directed cancer cell death
6. Mitochondrial DNA mutations play significant role in prostate cancer
7. New imaging method gives early indication if brain cancer therapy is effective, U-M study shows
8. BRCA1 causes ovarian cancer through indirect, biochemical route
9. Researchers identify target for cancer drugs
10. Weizmann Institute scientists develop a new approach for directing treatment to metastasized prostate cancer in the bones.
11. First atlas of key brain genes could speed research on cancer, neurological diseases