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News from the Latest Issue of Molecular Medicine
Date:1/12/2010

New research from the bimonthly biomedical journal, Molecular Medicine. Molecular Medicine publishes research concerned with the pathogenesis of disease at the molecular level, in order to design specific molecular tools for disease diagnosis, treatment and prevention.

(Vocus) January 12, 2010 -- By the time a person experiences symptoms of an aggressive brain tumor it is often too late. Dr. Christina Piperi and her colleagues at the University of Athens Medical School have discovered genetic fingerprints of the glioblastoma multiforme brain tumor cell that could ultimately be used to diagnosis the tumor earlier in the disease process. They found that analyzing the methylation status helps differentiate normal and disease cells. Looking at four genes activated in glioma, they found that two of them – MGMT and RAR – were significantly more methylated in 58.8% to 70.58% of analyzed glioblastoma multiforme cases. This study also highlights a potential link between methylation patterns and a potent cytokine, IL-6, suggesting a specific role for inflammation mediators in the regulation of gene methylation. The hope is that the finding could offer clues to the aggressive nature of the tumor and point to new treatment avenues.

In another study, Stephanie L. Nott, Mesut Miyan and colleagues at the University of Rochester in upstate New York have discovered a potential treatment for endocrine resistant breast cancer tumors. It is well known that the estrogen hormone 17²-estradiol (E2), is involved in the initiation and progression of some types of breast cancer. Estrogen receptors have been used as transcription factors to mediate the effects of E2. That has been the basis for the state-of-the-art treatments for ER-positive breast cancer. But they do not work for ER-negative breast tumors. Dr. Nott and her colleagues tested the idea that they could design a transcription factor tha
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