Navigation Links
Pathway controlling cell growth revealed
Date:2/17/2013

A Melbourne-based research team has discovered a genetic defect that can halt cell growth and force cells into a death-evading survival state.

The finding has revealed an important mechanism controlling the growth of rapidly-dividing cells that may ultimately lead to the development of new treatments for diseases including cancer.

The discovery was made by Associate Professor Joan Heath, Dr Yeliz Boglev and colleagues at the Melbourne-Parkville Branch of the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research. Dr Kate Hannan, Associate Professor Rick Pearson and Associate Professor Ross Hannon at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, also contributed to the work, which was published in the journal PLOS Genetics this month.

Associate Professor Heath, a Ludwig Institute Member who recently transferred her research group to the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, said the discovery was made while studying zebrafish embryos that harbour genetic mutations which prevent rapid cell growth during organ development.

"Zebrafish embryos provide us with a great laboratory model for these studies because they are transparent, an attribute that allows us to track the growth of rapidly developing organs in live animals under a simple microscope. Moreover, the genes controlling growth and proliferation of developing tissues are essentially identical in zebrafish and humans, and are known to be frequently commandeered by cancer cells.

"We discovered that a mutation in a relatively under-studied gene called pwp2h leads to the faulty assembly of ribosomes, the 'protein factories' of cells, and stops cells from dividing," she said. "What was intriguing was that cells under stress from ribosome failure did not die. Instead, the cells switched on a survival mechanism called autophagy and began obtaining nutrients by digesting their own intracellular components."

Ribosomes are large molecular machines in cells that manufacture proteins, and are critical for cell growth and division. Currently, there is great interest in developing therapeutics to block ribosome production, as a strategy to prevent cancer cells from dividing.

"Our research could have implications for this type of cancer treatment," Associate Professor Heath said. "We showed that when ribosome assembly is disrupted, cells stop growing as desired, but to our surprise they enter a survival state. An anti-cancer treatment that inadvertently promotes the survival of cancer cells through autophagy is clearly not desirable. However, our findings in zebrafish show that if ribosome assembly is blocked and, at the same time, autophagy is inhibited, cells die rapidly. It is possible that a combination of inhibitors that block ribosome function and autophagy could provide an effective anti-cancer treatment," she said.

Associate Professor Heath's group is continuing its research at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute, examining other genetic mutations in zebrafish that disrupt cell growth and division. "We are keen to enhance our approach by applying existing research technologies at the institute," she said. "We have identified a number of cellular processes that rapidly dividing cells including cancer cells depend on, and the next stage is to test whether they could provide new targets for anti-cancer therapy."


'/>"/>
Contact: Vanessa Solomon
solomon@wehi.edu.au
61-393-452-971
Walter and Eliza Hall Institute

Rachel Steinhardt
rsteinhardt@licr.org
212-450-1582
Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research


Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Penn vet team uncovers a pathway that stimulates bone growth
2. Tips for Making the Holidays Safer and Calmer for Dementia Patients from Pathways Home Health & Hospice
3. Mayo Clinic-led study unravels biological pathway that controls the leakiness of blood vessels
4. Pathways Home Health & Hospice Receives 2012 HomeCare Elite Top Honor for Quality Care
5. Study identifies potential new pathway for drug development
6. Investigational agent targets gene signaling pathways to improve response for patients with CLL
7. Pathway identified in human lymphoma points way to new blood cancer treatments
8. Optogenetics illuminates pathways of motivation through brain, Stanford study shows
9. Targeting downstream proteins in cancer-causing pathway shows promise in cell, animal model
10. Scientists uncover a new pathway that regulates information processing in the brain
11. Patients with aberrations in two genes respond better to drugs blocking a well-known cancer pathway
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Pathway controlling cell growth revealed
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... The Jones Agency, a family owned insurance company ... launching a cooperative charity drive with the Tarrant Area Food Bank in the hopes ... and families in need, the Tarrant County Food Bank offers hope and security to ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... San Ramon, CA (PRWEB) , ... February 12, 2016 , ... ... tissue donation in northern California and Nevada, announced a partnership with San Ramon Regional ... be transferred to the hospital’s facilities as a way to accommodate a more certain ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... Mediaplanet today announces ... The print component of “Revolutionizing Cancer Care” is distributed within the February 12 ... Seattle, with a circulation of approximately 250,000 copies and an estimated readership of ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... US Sport Camps is pleased to announce the ... in Norwalk, serves as the host site and directing the camps is PGA Professional ... had successful camps in recent years around Des Moines and are fortunate to have ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... 12, 2016 , ... The aging population and longer life ... care. With that, says Patrick Loughney, president of Longtree & Associates, LLC ... term care environments. His company, which offers prep courses and workshops in long ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/12/2016)... Feb. 12, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - Demers Ambulances announces its first delivery ... Okaloosa County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) ... and one LT2 van. Quality Emergency Vehicles in ... for the sale.  This is the latest in Demers, ongoing ... Vice President at Demers. --> Benoit LaFortune , ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... VIEJO , Kalifornien, 12. Februar 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... mit der Aufnahme von Patienten für eine Studie ... von Aneurysmen („WEB") speziell für die Behandlung von ... Spelle , MD, Leiter der Neuroradiologie an der ... Frankreich, und Hauptprüfarzt der CLARYS-Studie hat den ersten ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... SAN DIEGO and SEOUL, ... -- Silicon Biosys­tems Menarini and Macrogen, Inc. today ... clinical assays and innovative procedures for precision medicine ... to combine Silicon Biosystems, DEPArray™ digital-sorting technology with ... development of tests certified under the Clinical Laboratory ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: