HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Chemists unlock secret to activating tumor suppressor gene

Researchers have discovered the way to activate a key anti-cancer signal that goes AWOL in several gynecologic and brain cancers.

Since the late 1990s, researchers have known that a gene called PTEN (short for phosphatase and tensin homolog on chromosome 10) encodes a signaling protein that suppresses tumor growth. What wasn't known, however, was what mechanism activated PTEN. The answer was found by a group of researchers led by University of Illinois at Chicago chemistry professor Wonhwa Cho. They report their findings in the June 9 online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"The role of PTEN is to counterbalance the action of an enzyme that induces cell growth," said Cho. "Over-activation of the enzyme can lead to cancer. So if you lose a PTEN gene and its cellular activity, the cell goes out of control. It's like a car with an accelerator but without the brakes."

It was generally thought that PTEN was activated by binding to other proteins, giving it a signal to interact with the cell membrane. But Cho said that's not the case.

Cho's group found that PTEN itself can be activated by phosphorylation, or the chemical addition of a phosphate tag.

"We found that the phosphorylation of certain sites of the PTEN protein worked as a switch to completely change its electrostatic property," said Cho. "It switched from being neutral to positively charged, then recognized the opposite charge on the membrane to bind there." Once the bind took hold, the cancer suppression action went to work.

Cho's laboratory used a biophysical technique called surface plasmon resonance analysis and cellular microscopic analysis of green fluorescence protein-labeled PTEN to unlock the secret of its activation. The UIC chemist believes the mechanism described for PTEN is a relatively common way to regulate membrane binding and activation of many cellular proteins involved in cell signaling and membrane traffickin
'"/>

Contact: Paul Francuch
francuch@uic.edu
312-996-3457
University of Illinois at Chicago
10-Jun-2003


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Chemists at four pharmaceutical companies named Heroes for treating childhood conditions
2. Chemists create unusual lariat RNA, a key intermediate in biological splicing
3. American Institute of Chemists names Ralph Hirschmann AIC Gold Medalist
4. Chemists explore the shape of the key that signals cell division in cancer cells
5. Nanoencapsulation: Chemists at TSRI discover a new and simple way of controlling reactions
6. Chemists characterize regulators of zinc intake and export in cells
7. Chemists spin materials to improve magnetic resonance data
8. Chemists describe "zipper teeth" of DNA molecules -- publish results in the journal Nature
9. Chemists report new approach to synthetic fragments of medically important Heparin
10. Chemists hold national meeting August 22-26
11. Chemists hold national meeting August 22-26 in New Orleans

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/15/2016)... 2016 Yissum Research Development Company of ... of the Hebrew University, announced today the formation of ... of various human biological indicators. Neteera Technologies has completed ... private investors. ... of electromagnetic emissions from sweat ducts, enables reliable and ...
(Date:3/11/2016)... --> --> ... Recognition Market by Technology (Pattern Recognition), by Component (Hardware, ... Type (On-Premises and Cloud), by Industry Vertical and by ... the global market is expected to grow from USD ... 2020, at a CAGR of 19.1%. , ...
(Date:3/9/2016)... , March 9, 2016 ... identified that more than 23,000 public service employees either ... been receiving their salary unlawfully.    --> ... government identified that more than 23,000 public service employees ... had been receiving their salary unlawfully.    --> ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... 04, 2016 , ... Proove Biosciences, Inc. , the commercial and research ... McGill University . The partnership is designed to advance research in pain genetics in ... in pain. With the new agreement, researchers at Proove Biosciences are able to collaborate ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... May 04, 2016 , ... PBI-Gordon Corporation is pleased ... Sales. , Doug began his career at PBI-Gordon in February 1988, after finishing ... wide variety of roles, ranging from customer service to national product manager, to helping ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... ... 03, 2016 , ... In a list published by the Boston Business Journal, ... private companies; a small percentage of the state's 615,000+ small businesses. The list examined ... in revenue from 2012 to 2015. , As this award comes on ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... , ... May 03, 2016 , ... ... NeuroTech NYC , the sensor and data driven conferences, will take place on June 7-8, 2016, ... UnitedHealth's Vidya Raman-Tangella on incorporating technology -- including AR/VR, machine learning, apps, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: