Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Protein Identified In Development Of Lung Cancer

Date:
November 29, 2004
Source:
Ohio State University
Summary:
A newly-identified protein that can flag an important tumor suppressor gene for destruction may be a key player in the development of lung cancer.

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A newly-identified protein that can flag an important tumor suppressor gene for destruction may be a key player in the development of lung cancer.

Related Articles


Writing in the Nov. 17 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, scientists in the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center (OSUCCC) note that the protein, called Pirh2, when overexpressed, diminishes the activity of p53 – possibly the most powerful tumor suppressor in the entire genome. When it functions normally, p53 regulates several critical cellular processes, including cell growth and death, DNA repair and angiogenesis, the formation of new blood vessels. Studies show that p53 mutation is common, occurring in at least half of all cancer.

“The p53 gene is possibly the most important ‘manager’ in a cell. When it’s not working properly, it can be disastrous,” says Miguel Villalona, associate professor of internal medicine in the Ohio State University College of Medicine and Public Health and senior author of the study. Villalona says that this is the first time Pirh2 has been implicated in the loss of p53 function in tumors.

Villalona and his colleagues identified the link between Pirh2 and the development of cancer by evaluating Pirh2 expression in human and mouse lung tumor samples and comparing it with Pirh2 expression in normal tissue from the same samples. They found that Pirh2 expression was higher in 27 of 32 (84 percent) of human lung cancers and in 14 of 15 (93 percent) of mouse tumors than it was in the normal tissue.

“This is the first demonstration that Pirh2 expression is elevated in patients’ tumors and supports the notion that it may be an important molecule in the development of lung cancer, says Gregory Otterson, associate professor of internal medicine in the OSU College of Medicine and Public Health and co-author of the study.

Wenrui Duan, the lead author of the study and a research scientist in the department of internal medicine, says that when Pirh2 is overexpressed, it “acts like glue,” binding a substance called ubiquitin to p53 protein. Ubiquitin acts like a flag, telling the cell’s recycling center – the proteasome – that the proteins are ready to be destroyed. Destruction of the proteins essentially cripples p53 and opens the door to malignant transformation.

Supporting that notion, the researchers discovered that p53 protein was more ubiquitinated in the mouse lung cancers than in the normal tissue, and that generally, p53 expression was lower in tumor tissue than in normal tissue.

Interestingly, additional analysis revealed that Pirh2 overexpression is not related to any mutations in p53 – only loss of function.

“In effect, we’ve discovered that Prih2 is an oncogene. It promotes cancer by undermining the tumor suppressor’s ability to do its job,” says Duan.

At the same time, these findings may offer scientists a possible new target for intervention.

Villalona points out that new drugs are already on the market that can inhibit the activity of the proteasome, and suggests that these drugs may be able to counter Pirh2’s oncogenic behavior by restoring p53 function. Additional studies would be needed to demonstrate that, however.

“We clearly need of new ways to fight lung cancer,” says Villalona, noting that lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States and claims more than one million lives worldwide every year.

Grants from the National Cancer Institute supported the study.

Additional investigators from Ohio State who contributed to the project include Li Gao, Lawrence Druhan, Wei-Guo Zhu and Carl Morrison.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Ohio State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Ohio State University. "New Protein Identified In Development Of Lung Cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 November 2004. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041123205751.htm>.
Ohio State University. (2004, November 29). New Protein Identified In Development Of Lung Cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041123205751.htm
Ohio State University. "New Protein Identified In Development Of Lung Cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/11/041123205751.htm (accessed December 20, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

The Best Tips to Curb Holiday Carbs

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) It's hard to resist those delicious but fattening carbs we all crave during the winter months, but there are some ways to stay satisfied without consuming the extra calories. Vanessa Freeman (@VanessaFreeTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

Sierra Leone Bikers Spread the Message to Fight Ebola

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) More than 100 motorcyclists hit the road to spread awareness messages about Ebola. Nearly 7,000 people have now died from the virus, almost all of them in west Africa, according to the World Health Organization. Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

Researchers Test Colombian Village With High Alzheimer's Rates

AFP (Dec. 19, 2014) In Yarumal, a village in N. Colombia, Alzheimer's has ravaged a disproportionately large number of families. A genetic "curse" that may pave the way for research on how to treat the disease that claims a new victim every four seconds. Duration: 02:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Double-Amputee Becomes First To Move Two Prosthetic Arms With His Mind

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) A double-amputee makes history by becoming the first person to wear and operate two prosthetic arms using only his mind. Jen Markham has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins