Cancer gene is normally a 'carpenter' in the cell

DURHAM, N.C. -- A gene whose malfunction causes several leukemias normally functions as a "molecular carpenter," Duke pharmacologists have discovered. The gene, called c-Abl, triggers other molecules that construct the internal framework of cells.

According to the scientists, this discovery of c-Abl's normal function could reveal new targets for cancer drugs, and it also hints at a role for c-Abl in the brain, in building nerve cells and aiding their movement.

In an article in the September issue of Genes & Development, the researchers reported that c-Abl is mainly switched on by another protein called Src, which is also known to cause cancer when it malfunctions. Src, in turn, is activated by external growth factors such as PDGF and EGF. Growth factors are substances outside the cell that trigger them to proliferate. Once activated, c-Abl itself acts as a trigger for the cell to reorganize the internal framework, called the cytoskeleton, that gives cells their shape and allows them to move.

"We have long understood many of the things that the oncogenic, or cancer-causing, forms, of c-Abl do," said Ann Marie Pendergast, associate professor of pharmacology and cancer biology, who led the research. "But because we did not know the normal function of c-Abl, we have been missing a critical part of the picture of how the cancer-causing forms take over the cell's machinery. "If we knew how c-Abl functioned normally, we would know more precisely how the oncogenic forms alter cell function."

Lead author on the Genes & Development paper is postdoctoral fellow Rina Pattner, and other authors besides Pendergast are Lisa Kadlec, Kris DeMali and Andrius Kazlauskas. Their work was supported by the National Cancer Institute and by the Glaxo Wellcome Collaborative Program in Cancer Research.

According to Pendergast, studies over the last decade had revealed c-Abl's key role in producing two forms of leukemia-

Contact: Dennis Meredith
Duke University

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Cancer vaccine based on pathogenic listeria bacteria shows promise targeting metastases
2. 16th EORTC NCI AACR Symposium Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics
3. 16th EORTC-NCI-AACR Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics
4. Cancer gene MYC emerging as key research target
5. Cancer patient, heal thyself
6. USC researcher named General Motors Cancer Research Scholar
7. Fox Chase Cancer Centers Alfred Knudson Jr. named 2004 Kyoto Prize winner
8. Wilex & Fox Chase Cancer Center begin trial w/ novel compound targeting tumor invasion & metastasis
9. Cancer drug resistance research leads to possible therapeutic target for Alzheimers disease
10. Fox Chase Cancer Center research shows kidney cancer can be diagnosed in urine
11. National Cancer Gene Therapy Foundation gives $4.0 million in research grants

Post Your Comments:

(Date:6/23/2020)... , ... June 23, 2020 ... ... of gene-to-protein and monoclonal antibody development services, today announced that the company ... and services to the pharmaceutical, diagnostics, and research industries. The decision to ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... 2020 , ... The field of quantitation of large molecules or proteins has ... area. However, the use of mass spectrometry in this field has gained a lot ... do you choose which approach to use (LBA or MS)?” In many cases, ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... June 23, 2020 , ... In its June 22 online ... with Dr. James L. Sherley, M.D., Ph.D., founder and director of stem cell biotechnology ... announced on June 16 that starting July 5 it would begin offering ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/18/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... July 17, 2020 , ... ... global consulting firm for the life sciences and food industries, is pleased to ... Director of Clinical Research – Business Development. , Charles is an accomplished and ...
(Date:7/10/2020)... ... July 09, 2020 , ... In most research using ... suppress pigment formation in zebrafish embryos, maintaining optical transparency to facilitate microscopic imaging. ... has been using the zebrafish model to investigate the causes of leukaemia and ...
(Date:7/7/2020)... ... 2020 , ... Bio-IT World has announced the winners of ... University of Chicago, Massachusetts General Hospital, Mission: Cure, and the Pistoia Alliance were ... outstanding examples of how technology innovations and strategic initiatives can be powerful forces ...
(Date:7/1/2020)... WESTMINSTER, Colo. (PRWEB) , ... ... ... providers of expert tissue data insights, today announced that the launch of ... PD-L1 results along with data about the tumor microenvironment (TME). , “Flagship’s ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: