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Human cells secrete cancer-killing protein, UK study finds
Date:7/23/2009

Rangnekar first discovered the Par-4 gene in 1993. In 2007, Rangnekar's team introduced the gene into a mouse embryo, creating a cancer-resistant "supermouse" that did not develop tumors. In fact, the mice possessing Par-4 actually live a few months longer than lab mice without the gene, indicating that Par-4 mice have no toxic side effects.

While Par-4 is not necessarily a "magic bullet" it does not target every type of cancer cell Rangnekar says it could play a major role in developing new combination treatment modalities for cancer patients. His hope is that the next generation of treatments will be even more effective than conventional treatments available today, with fewer and less severe side effects.

"I look at this research from the standpoint of how it can be developed to benefit the cancer patient, and that's what keeps us focused," Rangnekar said, discussing the potential of Par-4 in 2007. "The pain that cancer patients go through not just from the disease, but also from the treatment is excruciating. If you can treat the cancer and not harm the patient, that's a major breakthrough."

Rangnekar holds the Alfred Cohen, M.D., Endowed Chair in Oncology Research at the UK College of Medicine.


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Contact: Keith Hautala
keith.hautala@uky.edu
859-257-1754
University of Kentucky
Source:Eurekalert

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