Navigation Links
New CU Study Suggests Link Between Tumor Suppressors and Starvation Survival
Date:5/9/2013

Boulder, CO (PRWEB) May 09, 2013

A particular tumor suppressor gene that fights cancer cells does more than clamp down on unabated cell division -- the hallmark of the disease -- it also can help make cells more fit by allowing them to fend off stress, says a University of Colorado Boulder study.

CU-Boulder Professor Min Han said the research team was interested in how a common tumor suppressor gene known as Retinoblastoma 1, or Rb, behaved under conditions of starvation. The question is important, said Han, because it may help researchers understand why many cancer cells are more susceptible to starvation or fasting than ordinary cells.

Han and his team studied a popular lab organism called C. elegans, a translucent nematode smaller than an eyelash. Many of the C. elegans genes have similar, corresponding human genes called homologs, and almost all cellular mechanisms found in the nematodes also are found in mammals, including humans, he said. The team charted changes in the physiology of newly hatched C. elegans in the absence of food to look at the corresponding stress response.

“We found the tumor suppressor Rb is a critical regulator of the starvation response,” said Han, who also is a Howard Hughes Medical Investigator. “Rb is known for doing more than just suppressing cell division associated with cancer -- it carries out a host of other cellular tasks including regulating development. The new findings by our group and research by other groups suggest organisms survive longer when they encounter starvation by regulating the expression of a large number of genes.”

A paper on the subject was published online May 9 in Current Biology, a publication of Cell Press. The co-authors on the study, Mingxue Cui, Max Cohen and Cindy Teng, are all researchers associated with both CU-Boulder and HHMI. The study was funded by HHMI and the National Institutes of Health.

As part of the study, the researchers monitored the two- to three-week survival time of hundreds of C. elegans hatchlings in an environment with no food, which caused immediate “developmental arrest,” said Han, a professor in CU-Boulder’s molecular, cellular and developmental biology department. “The survival time of the young nematodes is dramatically shorter when the Rb gene is mutated, which causes changes in the activities of multiple cell signaling pathways.”

The study suggests that Rb plays a critical role in maintaining a starvation-induced “transcriptome,” which is the transcription of DNA to corresponding bits of RNA that allow researchers to pinpoint when and where each gene is turned on or off in the cells, he said. Under starved conditions, for example, Rb represses some responses induced by other physical stressors like pathogens and toxins.

Han said the Rb gene is mutated in a large percentage of human cancers. Hundreds of mutations in the RB gene have been identified in people with retinoblastoma, a rare type of eye cancer that usually strikes young children.

“Altogether, these findings identify Rb as a critical regulator of the starvation response and suggest a link between functions of tumor suppressors and starvation survival,” the team wrote in Current Biology. “These results may provide mechanistic insights into why cancer cells are often hypersensitive to starvation treatment.”

There are about 330 HHMI Investigators in the nation, including 15 Nobel laureates and 157 members of the National Academy of Sciences. Other HHMI Investigators at CU-Boulder include Natalie Ahn, Kristi Anseth, Tom Cech (also a Nobel laureate) and Roy Parker. In addition, HHMI Investigator Lee Niswander is at the University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine.

Founded in 1953 by aviator and industrialist Howard R. Hughes, HHMI is a nonprofit medical research organization that ranks as one of the nation’s largest philanthropies. In 2012 HHMI spent $800 million for research and $119 million for science education.

An image of C. elegans is available by entering the search term “C. elegans” at http://photography.colorado.edu/res/sites/news/.

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2013/5/prweb10717883.htm.


'/>"/>
Source: PRWeb
Copyright©2012 Vocus, Inc.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Study Suggests Vaccine May Help Kids With Brain Cancer
2. Study reveals how cancer drug causes diabetic-like state
3. Coffee Drinking in Pregnancy Wont Lead to Sleepless Baby: Study
4. Lower GI problems plague many with rheumatoid arthritis, Mayo Clinic study finds
5. Veggies Like Broccoli, Cabbage May Help Fight Breast Cancer: Study
6. No Added Cancer Risk From Hip Replacement Materials: Study
7. Reported Decline in U.S. Pneumonia Deaths May Be False: Study
8. Early Study Finds Some Promise for Lung Cancer Vaccine
9. Narcissists Often Ace Job Interviews, Study Finds
10. Sexual objectification of female artists in music videos exists regardless of race, MU study finds
11. Soy may alleviate hot flashes in menopause, large-scale study finds
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... February 05, 2016 , ... ... the company's lighter, sleeker next generation LYNX VR Indoor Trainer with multi-rider capability ... in design and manufacturing not only reduce the weight of the unit, they ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... February 05, 2016 , ... The event is being ... Block Event Center in Minneapolis, Minn. Triumph Over Parkinson’s will fund nearly $100,000 for ... of Schneiderman’s Furniture, lives with Parkinson’s disease and is the architect of this informative ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... , ... February 05, 2016 , ... Looking for a ... be at the tips of your toes. Foot massage, whether administered by a professional ... comfort and relaxation. The American Board of Multiple Specialties in Podiatry (ABMSP) ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... 05, 2016 , ... The Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF) – ... serving the lymphoma community through a comprehensive series of education programs, outreach initiatives ... Tasting Event at the La Gorce Country Club in Miami Beach on March ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... ... 2016 , ... The American public tends to feel uncomfortable about drinking recycled ... municipal or well water. The recent experience with lead contaminated water in Flint, Michigan, ... way toward increasing public acceptance of recycled waste water as drinking water. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/5/2016)... , Feb. 5, 2016  Redwood Scientific Technologies, Inc. ... product designed to help women balance their hormones. This ... technology. Jason Cardiff , President and ... able to help the millions of women across the ... effects of imbalanced hormones. Our research and development team ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... Ontario , Feb. 5, 2016  Aralez Pharmaceuticals ... combination of POZEN Inc. ("POZEN") and Tribute Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc. ... POZEN and shareholders of Tribute. The combined company will ... pharmaceutical company with operations in Canada ... the United States . Under the terms of ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... -- Dehaier Medical Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: DHRM ... markets and sells medical devices and wearable sleep ... and international markets, today announced its corporate and ... Company,s resources to develop its mobile health business, ... more on its major businesses. As of this ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: