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Master molecular switch may prevent the spread of cancer cells to distant sites in the body
Date:3/16/2009

cated those cDNAs that produced proteins that promoted the epithelial splicing program. It was from this screen that ESRP1 and ESRP2 emerged.

In ongoing work, the team found that ESRP1 and ESRP2 are critical for epithelial-specific splicing of many other genes in addition to FGFR2. Several of the proteins made from these RNAs also have different functions that either help cells to stay attached in place or to promote local invasion of cancer cells that are capable of traveling to distant sites. The team is also engineering mice in which the genes for ESRP1 and 2 can be selectively "knocked-out" so that they can further study the importance of these two proteins during development as well as in disease. In addition, studies are planned to use the same splicing reporter system to screen for drugs that might restore the epithelial pathway and interfere with metastasis and fibrosis.


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Contact: Karen Kreeger
karen.kreeger@uphs.upenn.edu
215-349-5658
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

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