Navigation Links
How normal cells become brain cancers
Date:9/28/2011

Brain tumor specimens taken from neurosurgery cases at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) Medical Center has given scientists a new window on the transformation that occurs as healthy brain cells begin to form tumors.

The work may help identify new drugs to target oligodendroglioma, a common type of brain tumor, at its earliest stage, when it is generally most treatable. Any potential drugs identified will have to prove safe and effective in clinical trials, a process that can take several years.

As described in the journal Cancer Cell this month, the UCSF team found that the pool of cells from which oligodendroglioma tumors emerge normally divide "asymmetrically" by splitting into two unequal parts like giving birth to fraternal twins who look different and have distinct fates. When these normal cells transform into cancer cells, they switch gears and begin dividing symmetrically, essentially giving birth to identical twins instead.

"This happens early before the tumor forms, and it may provide a point to intervene in the process of tumor initiation," said Claudia Petritsch, PhD, an assistant professor with the UCSF Brain Tumor Research Center who led the research.

The Brain Tumor Research Center is part of the UCSF Department of Neurological Surgery, which is consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of the top departments in the world. Its doctors perform more than 1,100 neurosurgeries a year to remove brain tumors, and in the last 30 years, this work has helped to build one of the most extensive brain tumor repositories in the United States, with tissue samples collected from more than 7,800 cases of cancer.

In their research, Petritsch and her colleagues used genetically engineered mice to identify that a protein called NG2 controls this switch, and they are working on ways to target genes that regulate the process as a way of fighting oligodendroglioma and perhaps other brain tumors.

Why Divisions Matter to Cancer

Oligodendrogliomas are unusual among brain tumors because they often respond to chemotherapy drugs. However, the tumor frequently returns in a form that is resistant to chemotherapy and requires repeated surgical removal.

Petritsch and her colleagues first discovered last year that oligodendroglioma tumors derive from a type of progenitor cell called "oligodendrocyte progenitors" that proliferate in the brain throughout life. These progenitors may also play an important role when the brain is injured by multiplying rapidly and helping heal wounds.

The new studies in mice suggest that lacking an injury, these progenitors divide mostly asymmetrically, maintaining an equilibrium of these cells within the brain. Progenitors can also switch gears and divide symmetrically instead. Scientists believe that allows the brain to provide an expanded pool of cells when needed.

Using mouse models of the tumors as well as tissue samples taken from people with the disease, Petritsch and her colleagues showed that before the tumors arise, the cells preemptively make this switch, transforming from dividing asymmetrically to dividing symmetrically.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jason Socrates Bardi
jason.bardi@ucsf.edu
415-502-6397
University of California - San Francisco
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Deaf children with cochlear implants report similar quality of life to that of normal-hearing kids
2. Cells of aggressive leukemia hijack normal protein to grow
3. New study finds 70 percent of able-bodied hockey players have abnormal hip and pelvis MRIs
4. Autism Consortium study in Pediatrics shows CMA finds more genetic abnormalities than current tests
5. Mount Sinai researchers are the first to identify heart abnormalities in World Trade Center workers
6. Researchers ID brain abnormalities in children exposed to methamphetamine in utero
7. A new strategy normalizes blood sugars in diabetes
8. Paired drugs kill precancerous colon polyps, spare normal tissue
9. Novel Method Eyed for Normalizing Blood Sugar
10. Body Piercing: Sign of Deviance or Normal Practice?
11. New Heart Health Booster Supports Blood Pressure in the Normal Range*
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
How normal cells become brain cancers
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Brenntag Specialties, Inc.(BSI) , is pleased ... Beverage and Dietary Supplement market segments across the western United ... east of the Rocky Mountains since 2012. Consistent performance in business development ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... February 08, 2016 , ... ... Houma, LA, celebrates the beginning of a new charity campaign. As part of ... Appointed Special Advocates (CASA). In the belief that children deserve a voice, and ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... ... February 08, 2016 , ... A man who has struggled to quit smoking, a man ... , was determined to find solutions to his problems – and he did. Now Nabat, ... is ready to introduce his breakthrough inventions to the world and better people's lives. His ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... New York, NY (PRWEB) , ... February 08, 2016 , ... ... handles are too much to handle, you are not alone. According to the Center ... conditions include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, some ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... , ... February 08, 2016 , ... Steve Helwig & ... a vital new community enrichment program, has teamed up with Citizens Opposed to Domestic ... suffering from intimate abuse. To support all those victimized by the fear of violence ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/9/2016)... , Feb. 9, 2016 The new report "Global ... Business Research & Consulting group reveals that global diagnostic ultrasound devices ... to grow to US$ 7,466.3 million by 2019 at a CAGR ... analysis of global ultrasound market has been analyzed for six geographies ... , Asia-Pacific , Latin America ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... This TforG report includes the Surgical Procedures ... coding system in South Korea . ... report provides written and numerical analysis on the current ... addition, the latest reforms of the local Healthcare system ... --> The report helps businesses gain a unique ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... HONG KONG , Feb. 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... PhD, has joined Athenex as Vice President of Corporate Strategy ... Raymond Yeung , MSc, MBA has joined as Senior Director and ... Hong Kong . Simon Pedder ... I have known for a while. Coupled together with their ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: