Navigation Links
Nipping metastases in the bud
Date:12/7/2011

The proliferation of metastases is often the main cause of complications and death from cancer. For the first time, researchers are looking very closely at the development of these metastases themselves, instead of focusing on the "primary" cancers from which they originated. In doing so, a team from the Swiss Center for Experimental Cancer Research (ISREC), at EPFL, was able to isolate a protein that plays a major role in metastasis development, and showed that the formation of secondary cancers could be prevented by blocking this protein. Their results will be published December 7, 2011, in the advance online edition of the journal Nature and will open the door to new therapeutic options for treating late stage cancers.

A vital protein for metastases

The researchers already knew that cancer cells spread widely throughout the body once a malignant tumor is established. These cells don't always result in a secondary cancer, however. It turns out that all cancer cells aren't created equal: only some of them, known as "cancer stem cells," can initiate metastases. And in order to do this, they must settle into a spot a niche that is conducive for their development.

The ISREC team was able to show that several conditions are necessary for cancer to propagate. "In particular, we were able to isolate a protein, periostin, in the niches where metastases develop," explains Joerg Huelsken, holder of the EPFL Debiopharm Chair in Signal Transduction in Oncogenesis. "Without this protein, the cancer stem cell cannot initiate metastasis; instead, it disappears or remains dormant."

Minimal side effects in mice

Periostin exists naturally as part of the extracellular matrix, and has been shown to play a role in fetal development. In adults, it is only active in specific organs the mammary glands, bones, skin and intestine. This research appears to prove that it plays an essential role in the environment that a cancer stem cell needs in order to develop a metastasis. Mice that were bred to lack this protein are resistant to metastasis formation. "We developed an antibody that adheres to this protein, making it inoperative, and we are hoping in this way to be able to block the process of metastasis formation," says Huelsken.

These experiments that blocked the periostin protein resulted in very few side effects in the mice. "This doesn't necessarily mean the same will hold true in humans," the researcher cautions. "We're not even sure that we'll be able to find an equivalent antibody that will work in humans."

This discovery is nonetheless very encouraging, especially since we now know that malignant tumors tend to spread more quickly than was previously believed. Preventing the development of metastases would thus appear to be an important therapeutic option that could limit the deleterious effects of cancers.


'/>"/>
Contact: Emmanuel Barraud
emmanuel.barraud@epfl.ch
41-21-693-07-52
Ecole Polytechnique Fdrale de Lausanne
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Start spreading the news: NYU scientists find therapeutic target to stop cancer metastases
2. Whole body MRI is highly accurate in the early detection of breast cancer metastases
3. Only 5 percent of cancer research funds are spent on metastases, yet it kills 90 percent of all cancer patients
4. Tumors bring their own support cells when forming metastases
5. Fox Chase researchers uncover new risk factors for brain metastases in breast cancer patients
6. ASTRO publishes palliative radiotherapy for bone metastases guideline
7. UNC physician-scientist receives grant to study breast cancer brain metastases
8. Radionuclide treatment against small tumors and metastases
9. New bone-targeting drug delays onset of metastases in hormone-resistant prostate cancer patients
10. Bone-strengthening drug gives pain relief in prostate cancer bone metastases
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Nipping metastases in the bud
(Date:6/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... On June ... sponsor of the 2016 Cereal Festival and World’s Longest Breakfast Table in Battle Creek, ... of the city’s history as home to some of the world’s leading providers of ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 25, 2016 , ... Experts from the American Institutes for ... Meeting June 26-28, 2016, at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. , AIR ... care planning, healthcare costs and patient and family engagement. , AIR researchers will ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... As a lifelong Southern Californian, Dr. ... his M.D from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. He trained in ... to complete his fellowship in hematology/oncology at the UCLA-Olive View-Cedars Sinai program where he ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... Those who have experienced traumatic events may suffer from a ... such as drug or alcohol abuse, as a coping mechanism. To avoid this pain ... following a traumatic event. , Trauma sufferers tend to feel a range of emotions, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Dr. Amanda Cheng, an ... Cheng has extensive experience with all areas of orthodontics, including robotic Suresmile technology, ... , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct to orthodontic treatment. It can be ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/26/2016)... , June 27, 2016  VMS Rehab Systems, Inc. ... will take whatever measures required to build a strong ... which is currently listed on the OTC Markets-pink current ... Chairman and CEO, "We are seeing an anomaly in ... understand, not only by the Company, but shareholders and ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... 24, 2016   Bay Area Lyme Foundation ... Dean Center for Tick Borne Illness , Harvard ... MIT Hacking Medicine, University of California, Berkeley, and ... the five finalists of Lyme Innovation , ... than 100 scientists, clinicians, researchers, entrepreneurs, and investors ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... and SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. , June 24, 2016 ... mobile pulmonary function testing company, is now able to perform sophisticated ... by ndd Medical Technologies , Inc. Patients ... hospital-based labs.  Thanks to ndd,s EasyOne PRO ® , ARL patients ... get any needed testing done in the comfort of her own ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: