Navigation Links
Researchers identify potential molecular target to prevent growth of cancer cells

GALVESTON, September 16, 2011 Researchers have shown for the first time that the protein fortilin promotes growth of cancer cells by binding to and rendering inert protein p53, a known tumor suppressor. This finding by researchers at the University of Texas Medical Branch may lead to treatments for a range of cancers and atherosclerosis, which p53 also helps prevent, and appears in the current print issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

"The p53 protein is a critical defense against cancer because it activates genes that induce apoptosis, or the death of cells. However, p53 can be made powerless by mutations and inhibitors like fortilin," said Dr. Ken Fujise, lead author of the study and director, Division of Cardiology at UTMB.

Fortilin, an amino acid polypeptide protein, works in direct opposition to p53, protecting cells from apoptosis. Fujise discovered fortilin in 2000 and the protein has become a central focus of his research. This study marks the first time that scientists have been able to show the exact mechanism whereby fortilin exerts its anti-apoptotic activity.

Fujise and his team used cell cultures and animal models to show that fortilin binds to and inhibits p53, preventing it from activating genes, such as BAX and Noxa, that facilitate cell death. Thus, cells that would be killed are allowed to proliferate.

"When normal cells become cancer cells, our bodies' natural biological response is to activate p53, which eliminates the hopelessly damaged cells," said Fujise. "This process explains why the majority of people are able to stay cancer-free for most of their lives. Conversely, mutated p53 genes are seen in more than half of all human cancers, making them the most frequently observed genetic abnormality in cancer."

According to Fujise, upon further research and validation of the biological mechanism described in this study, scientists can begin exploring compounds that could modulate fortilin's activity on p53.

Such a compound would be a powerful chemotherapy agent and, because p53 inhibition has also been associated with atherosclerosis, could also protect against coronary disease and its many complications, including heart attack and stroke.

"Though we are in the early stages of this research, once screening for compounds is initiated, we could have a potential new drug to investigate in a very short period of time," said Fujise. With the support of National Institutes of Health high-throughput screening programs, which make it possible to screen very large numbers of compounds against a drug target, the process of identifying a new drug could potentially be shortened to months rather than years, he added.

Other authors include scientists at UTMB and other institutions: Yanjie Chen, Takayuki Fujita, Di Zhang, Hung Doan, Decha Pinkaew, Zhihe Liu, Jiaxin Wu, Yuichi Koide, Andrew Chiu, Curtis Chen Jun Lin, Jui-Yoa Chang; and Ke-He Ruan.

The study was supported in part by the National Institutes of Health, the American Heart Association, and MacDonald General Research Fund.


Contact: Jim Kelly
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston

Related medicine news :

1. Cleveland Clinic researchers awarded NIH grant to study concussion-identifying blood test
2. Moffitt researchers find possible key to preventing chemotherapy resistance in ovarian cancer
3. $1.1 million grant targets disparities among medical researchers
4. Yale researchers use uterine stem cells to treat diabetes
5. Clemson researchers using interactive vision tool for driving studies
6. Researchers utilize neuroimaging to show how brain uses objects to recognize scenes
7. Researchers focus on secondary stroke prevention after study reveals room for improvement
8. Moffitt Cancer Center researchers use new tool to counter multiple myeloma drug resistance
9. Researchers find process that clears cholesterol and could reverse major cause of heart attack
10. Aerobic exercise may reduce the risk of dementia, Mayo Clinic researchers say
11. MU researchers use new video gaming technology to detect illness, prevent falls in older adults
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/12/2017)... Francisco, CA (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 ... ... Dr. Cheng, are now treating sleep apnea using cutting-edge Oventus O2Vent ... apnea, a serious sleep disorder characterized by frequent cessation in breathing. Oral appliances ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... The ... demand of today’s consumer and regulatory authorities worldwide. From Children’s to Adults 50+, ... to meet the highest standard. , These products are also: Gluten Free, ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... Bethesda, MD (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... Award of Excellence to Carol Friedman, PhD, FACMI, during the Opening Session of AMIA’s ... 4 – 8. , In honor of Morris F. Collen, a pioneer in the ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Information about the technology: , Otomagnetics has ... prevention of a major side effect of chemotherapy in children. Cisplatin and carboplatin ... cisplatin, hearing loss is FDA listed on-label as a dose limiting toxicity. Hearing ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... ... HMP , a leader in healthcare events and education, today announced that ... for ‘Best B-to-B Healthcare Website.’ Winners were announced during the Eddie & Ozzie Awards ... recognizes editorial and design excellence across a range of sectors. This year’s program included ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/28/2017)... 2017 Hill-Rom Holdings, Inc. (NYSE: HRC), will ... and webcast on Friday, November 3, 2017, beginning at ... at approximately 8:30 a.m. (CDT) / 9:30 a.m. (EDT). ... financial performance and guidance for 2018, Hill-Rom executives will ... operational performance, and long-range financial outlook through 2020. ...
(Date:9/25/2017)...   Montrium , an industry leader in ... IQPC Trial Master Files & Inspection Readiness Conference ... Clinical Services has selected eTMF Connect ... EastHORN, a leading European contract research organization (CRO), ... to enable greater collaboration with sponsors, improve compliance ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... DIEGO , Sept. 22, 2017 AVACEN ... medical device is now successfully helping those with the ... Fibromyalgia diagnosed Amanda in Essex, ... dressed and washing my hair, experiencing no sleep at ... in painful spasm… I cannot recommend [the AVACEN 100] ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: