HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Cancer cells 'reprogram' energy needs to grow and spread, study suggests

Studying a rare inherited syndrome, researchers at Johns Hopkins have found that cancer cells can reprogram themselves to turn down their own energy-making machinery and use less oxygen, and that these changes might help cancer cells survive and spread.

The Hopkins scientists report that the loss of a single gene in kidney cancer cells causes them to stop making mitochondria, the tiny powerhouses of the cell that consume oxygen to generate energy.

Instead, the cancer cells use the less efficient process of fermentation, which generates less energy but does not require oxygen. As a result, the cancer cells must take in large amounts of glucose. The appetite of cancer cells for glucose is so great that it can be used to identify small groups of tumor cells that have spread throughout the body.

Although changes in mitochondria have been described in many cancers, the Hopkins study shows for the first time how a cancer-causing mutation can block their production.

"There must be a strong advantage to cancer cells to stop using a highly efficient process in favor of one that generates much less energy," says Gregg Semenza, M.D., Ph.D., professor of pediatrics and director of the vascular biology program in the Institute for Cell Engineering at Johns Hopkins.

But turning down the "thermostat" in a sense, may give the cancer cell a survival edge. Reporting in the May 8 issue of Cancer Cell, Semenza and his colleagues found that if they reversed the switch and forced kidney cancer cells to start making mitochondria again, the cells produced increased amounts of free radicals, which can cause cells to stop dividing or even die.

Semenza's team uncovered the mitochondrial mechanism in a study of Von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) syndrome, caused by a single gene mutation and characterized by the tendency to develop tumors in many parts of the body, including the kidney, brain and adrenal glands.

Semenza and
'"/>

Contact: Audrey Huang
audrey@jhmi.edu
410-614-5105
Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions
7-May-2007


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Journalists can register now for ECCO 14 -- the European Cancer Conference
2. Cancer cures could work for canines and humans
3. The Cancer Genome Atlas awards funds for technology development
4. Cancer research specialist and HSPH professor awarded Medal of Honor from WHO cancer agency
5. Cancer stem cells similar to normal stem cells can thwart anti-cancer agents
6. Cancer stem cells can go it alone
7. Cancer drug enhances long-term memory
8. Cancer scientists create human leukemia process to map how disease begins, progresses
9. Cancer tip -- Nanoparticles can damage DNA, increase cancer risk
10. Other highlights from the April 18 Journal of the National Cancer Institute
11. American Association for Cancer Research provides support for promising cancer scientists

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


(Date:10/30/2019)... ... 29, 2019 , ... LGC Maine Standards releases VALIDATE® UC1 ... 701sa & 704sa. The kits, in a human-urine matrix, evaluate CA, CL, CREA, ... kit, liquid, ready-to-use, and prepared using the CLSI EP06-A “equal delta” sample preparation, ...
(Date:10/30/2019)... ... October 30, 2019 , ... ... that are encoded by the ordering of monomer residues into specific sequences ... the sidechain attachment to the backbone amide-nitrogen atoms. They are resistant to ...
(Date:10/26/2019)... ... October 23, 2019 , ... ... to the ImageXpress® Pico Automated Cell Imaging System including Digital Confocal 2D ... The Digital Confocal option allows scientists to decrease exposure time and improve ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:11/12/2019)... ... November 12, 2019 , ... REPROCELL Inc. a ... selected by Lantern Pharma to provided preclinical screening and drug sensitivity for its ... points using panels of unique and genetically edited cell lines from various tumors. ...
(Date:11/12/2019)... (PRWEB) , ... November 12, 2019 , ... ... campaign ever to educate Americans about the deadly healthcare-associated infection C. diff. The ... featuring survivors of the epidemic, which kills at least 30,000 people in the ...
(Date:11/5/2019)... ... November 04, 2019 , ... ... delivery technologies, development, and manufacturing solutions for drugs, biologics, gene therapies, and ... development technology, GPEx® Boost. The technology enhances Catalent’s proven GPEx expression platform ...
(Date:11/2/2019)... ... October 31, 2019 , ... Join Patrick ... a live webinar on Friday, November 15, 2019 at 1pm EST ... the science of profiling T-cell receptors (TCRs) and B-cell receptors (BCRs), has been ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: