Navigation Links
Blocking key enzyme in cancer cells could lead to new therapy
Date:8/1/2013

Researchers from the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine have identified a characteristic unique to cancer cells in an animal model of cancer -- and they believe it could be exploited as a target to develop new treatment strategies.

An enzyme that metabolizes the glucose needed for tumor growth is found in high concentrations in cancer cells, but in very few normal adult tissues. Deleting the gene for the enzyme stopped the growth of cancer in laboratory mice, with no associated adverse effects, reports Nissim Hay, UIC professor of biochemistry and molecular genetics, and his colleagues in the August 12 issue of Cancer Cell.

Targeting glucose metabolism for cancer therapy -- while avoiding adverse effects in other parts of the body -- has been a "questionable" strategy, Hay said. But he and his coworkers showed that the glucose-metabolism enzyme hexokinase-2 can be almost completely eliminated in adult mice without affecting normal metabolic functions or lifespan.

Hexokinase-2 is abundant in embryos but absent in most adult cells, where related enzymes take over its role in metabolism. One of the changes that mark a cell as cancerous is expression of the embryonic enzyme. Hay and his colleagues showed that the embryonic version is required for cancer cells to proliferate and grow, and that eliminating it halts tumor growth.

They developed a mouse strain in which they could silence or delete the HK2 gene in the adult animal, and they found that these mice could not develop or sustain lung or breast cancer tumors but were otherwise normal and healthy.

"We have deleted the HK2 gene systemically in these mice, and they have been living for more than two years now. Their lifespan is the same as normal mice," Hay said.

The researchers also looked at human lung and breast cancer cells in the lab, and found that if they eliminated all HK2, the cells stopped growing.

"We think that the process we used to delete the HK2 gene is not absolutely perfect, so there must be some low levels of HK2 in the mice. But that seems to be enough for the cells that use HK2, and the therapeutic effects on tumors in these mice are stable."

Hay thinks the enzyme is involved in making the building-blocks for the DNA of cancer cells, which need lots of all cellular components as they rapidly divide. "Without HK2, the cancer cells don't make enough DNA for new cells, and so tumor growth comes to a standstill," said Hay.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sharon Parmet
sparmet@uic.edu
312-413-2695
University of Illinois at Chicago
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Mount Sinai Researchers Find that Blocking Sugar Intake May Reduce Cancer Risk or Progression in Obese and Diabetic People
2. Study shows additional role for abiraterone in blocking tumor growth in CRPC
3. Autism Speaks trailblazer study -- Blocking cell distress signals can ease autism symptoms
4. Evidence supports blocking immune response to enhance viral therapy against solid tumors
5. Researchers prevent cancer spread by blocking tissue scarring
6. Spread of Cancer May be Reduced by Maximizing Melatonin by Blocking Blue Light Says Photonic Developments LLC
7. Moffitt researchers say effective immunotherapy for melanoma hinges on blocking suppressive factors
8. Patients with aberrations in two genes respond better to drugs blocking a well-known cancer pathway
9. Targeting errant immune system enzyme kills myelodysplastic cells
10. Molecular imaging enlists prostate enzyme to detect metastases
11. DNA-altering enzyme is essential for blood cell development
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/24/2016)... ... May 24, 2016 , ... Fire Door Solutions, headquartered ... resource, from start to finish, for Life Safety compliance. These expanded services ... requested by the Joint Commission, and fire stopping reviews, inspections, and repairs. ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... ... May 24, 2016 , ... ... enabled solutions and managed services today announced a strategic partnership with Five9 ... center market. , Altura, one of Avaya’s largest Platinum Business Partners, is ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... Atlanta, Georgia (PRWEB) , ... May 24, 2016 , ... ... in 1969 by the Church of Scientology and renowned professor of psychiatry Thomas Szasz, ... opening of its “Psychiatry: An Industry of Death” exhibit in Atlanta, Georgia. The opening ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... ... May 24, 2016 , ... Boyd Industries, a leading ... Unit® (CDU), a groundbreaking new product for pediatric dentistry , at AAPD 2016, ... San Antonio, TX May 26-29. The Concealed Delivery Unit keeps dental hand pieces and ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... ... May 24, 2016 , ... ... and clinical practice of radiosurgery, is recognizing five medical residents and students for ... stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT). The awards will be presented at the 2016 SRS/SBRT ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/24/2016)... 2016 The innovator of ... , s first dual therapy stent, introduces catheters ... OrbusNeich, a global company specializing in the provision ... include products to treat peripheral artery disease. The JADE™ ... devices for lower limb and arteriovenous (AV) fistula intervention. ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... , May 24, 2016 Dutch surgeons ... best practices around the world and treat patients on a global ... Africa , Asia and the US ... with instant messaging and networking in a totally secure environment. ... in a war zone working together with a surgeon at Harvard ...
(Date:5/23/2016)... FLINT, Mich. , May 23, 2016 Diplomat ... the third annual Fellowship and Internship programs. The hands-on ... 12. The full-time, paid Fellowship ... Flint, Michigan . Fellows and interns are ... downtown Flint at the Riverfront ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: