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American Cancer Society awards new research and training grants
Date:10/6/2010

cancers, with the ultimate goal of eliminating invasive and metastatic progression.

Kevin A. Janes, PhD, University of Virginia, will take a closer look at cancer "mosaics," differences in behavior that indicate which cells within a tumor are dividing uncontrollably, while others are dying, and still others are progressing toward metastasis. Dr. Janes and colleagues hope to measure the extent to which certain genes are expressed in individual cells of a tumor to "see" the cancer mosaic. With that information, researchers could begin thinking about new ways to specifically eradicate the cancer cells that are most deadly to patients.

Tomasz Cierpicki, PhD, University of Michigan, will investigate menin, a tumor suppressor that directly controls cell growth in endocrine organs, including parathyroid, pancreatic islets, and the pituitary gland. Mutations in the menin gene occur in about one in 30,000 individuals, more than 95 % of whom develop tumors of the endocrine glands by the fifth decade of life. The long term goal of the work is to pave the way towards development of novel drugs which could reverse its cancer-promoting effects.

Alexander Deiters, PhD, North Carolina State University, will investigate microRNAs, which are produced in every human cell and have been found to regulate thousands of genes. Misregulation of microRNAs has been linked to several cancers, including brain, breast, colon, liver, and lung cancer. The researchers hope to discover small molecule modulators of microRNA function, which could eventually lead to novel drugs.

Cancer Treatment

YongCheng Song, PhD, Baylor College of Medicine is developing drug candidates to target an enzyme important for the growth of a form of leukemia that occurs in infants (MLL).

Dan Duda, DMD, PhD, Massachusetts General Hospital has proposed the development of a novel drug candidate that might prevent the spread of prostate cancer cells to the bone, com
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Contact: David Sampson
david.sampson@cancer.org
American Cancer Society
Source:Eurekalert

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