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Fox Chase researchers discover novel role of the NEDD9 gene in early stages of breast cancer
Date:1/14/2013

PHILADELPHIA, PA (January 14, 2013)Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women in the United States. Many of these deaths occur when there is an initial diagnosis of invasive or metastatic disease. A protein called NEDD9which regulates cell migration, division and survivalhas been linked to tumor invasion and metastasis in a variety of cancers. Researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center have now shown that NEDD9 plays a surprising role in the early stages of breast tumor development by controlling the growth of progenitor cells that give rise to tumors. The findings, published in the journal Oncogene on January 14, 2013, could lead to personalized treatment strategies for women with breast cancer based on the levels of NEDD9 in their tumors.

"For several years, NEDD9 has been linked to tumor metastasis and invasion at later stages. This is the first study that really shows how important NEDD9 can be for the initiation of tumors in breast cancer, and to link this initiation process to progenitor cells," says lead study author Joy Little, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow at Fox Chase who works in the laboratory of senior study investigator Erica A. Golemis, PhD, Deputy Chief Scientific Officer and Vice President at Fox Chase.

In the study, Little, Golemis and their collaborators mated mice without the NEDD9 gene to mice engineered to develop HER2+ mammary tumors and unexpectedly found that these mice were largely resistant to tumor formation. Only 18% of the mice developed mammary tumors, compared with 80% of mice that had a functional NEDD9 gene. In contrast to previous research findings showing that an increase in NEDD9 levels promotes tumor aggressiveness, the researchers found that loss of NEDD9 had little effect on tumor metastasis, indicating that it is not required for this process in this specific context. Once formed, the tumors in mice lacking NEDD9 grew rapidly, suggesting that it either plays a less import
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Contact: Diana Quattrone
Diana.Quattrone@fccc.edu
215-728-7784
Fox Chase Cancer Center
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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