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Blood protein may hold key to stopping tumor growth in cancer patients
Date:3/31/2009

development."

For the study, researchers injected mice with prostate cancer cells to determine how ferritin and HKa affected the formation of new blood vessels.

The mice injected with the cancer cells grew tumors. But when researchers mixed HKa with the tumor cells, the HKa inhibited blood vessel formation. When researchers added ferritin to the mixture of HKa and cancer cells, however, the ferritin restored blood vessel formation, allowing the tumors to grow again.

"Blood vessels can either be helpful, for example in wound healing, or they can be harmful, for example by favoring tumor growth," Torti said. "Our new finding is that the interaction between ferritin and HKa can influence blood vessel formation. This finding could serve as the basis for strategies to either inhibit or stimulate blood vessels. This opens up a new realm of potential ways to treat tumors or other conditions that depend on new blood vessel formation."

The research team, supported by a National Institutes of Health grant, has begun work to develop an anti-tumor drug based on their findings.

Lan G. Coffman, Ph.D., Derek Parsonage, Ph.D., Ralph D'Agostino Jr., Ph.D., and Frank M. Torti, M.D., M.P.H, all of the Wake Forest University School of Medicine, also collaborated on the study.


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Contact: Jessica Guenzel
jguenzel@wfubmc.edu
336-716-3487
Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

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