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:6/27/2016)... California (PRWEB) , ... June ... ... pioneer in the patient payment industry today announced its strategic partnership with ... health system workflows. , The two companies’ proven, proprietary technology combine to ...
(Date:6/26/2016)... ... ... Pixel Film Studios Released ProSlice Levels, a Media Slicing Effect Plugin ... whole new perspective by using the title layers in ProSlice Levels to split-up ... Levels contains over 30 Different presets to choose from. FCPX users can ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... Austin residents seeking Mohs surgery services, can now turn to Dr. Jessica Scruggs ... for medical and surgical dermatology. , Dr. Dorsey brings specialization to include Mohs surgery, ... Micrographic Surgery completed by Dr. Dorsey was under the direction of Glenn Goldstein, MD, ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (PRWEB) , ... June 25, ... ... to helping both athletes and non-athletes recover from injury. Recently, he has implemented ... for the Oklahoma City area —Johnson is one of the first doctors to ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... 2016 , ... June 19, 2016 is World Sickle Cell Observance Day. In ... benefits of holistic treatments, Serenity Recovery Center of Marne, Michigan, has issued ... Sickle Cell Disease (SCD) is a disorder of the red blood cells, which can ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016  Collagen Matrix, Inc., ... development and manufacturing of collagen and mineral based ... today that Bill Messer has joined ... to further leverage the growing portfolio of oral ... Bill joins the Collagen Matrix executive ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016   Bay ... Rehabilitation Network,s Dean Center for Tick Borne ... Medicine and Rehabilitation, MIT Hacking Medicine, University of ... Innovation, today announced the five finalists of ... Lyme disease.  More than 100 scientists, clinicians, researchers, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... June 24, 2016 Research ... "Structural Electronics 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, Forecasts" ... In-Mold Electronics, Smart Skin, Structural Health ... Structural electronics involves electronic and/or electrical ... structures, replacing dumb structures such as vehicle bodies ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: