Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Cancer Hijacks Body's Wound-healing Process

Date:
June 9, 2005
Source:
Massachusetts Institute Of Technology
Summary:
Scientists have known for the last decade that a link exists between wound healing and cancer. Now scientists led by MIT Professor Robert Weinberg, a member of the Whitehead Institute, have discovered the process by which tumors hijack normal wound-healing processes for their own purposes.

Scientists have known for the last decade that a link exists between wound healing and cancer. Now scientists led by MIT Professor Robert Weinberg, a member of the Whitehead Institute, have discovered the process by which tumors hijack normal wound-healing processes for their own purposes.

The research, reported in the May 6 issue of the journal Cell, began when Akira Orimo, a postdoctoral scientist in Weinberg's lab, investigated the nature of stromal cells in breast cancer tumors.

Stromal cells form the connective tissue in a mammal's organs and glands. They also form the connective tissue inside tumors, which are composed mostly of cancer cells and stromal cells. Researchers wondered if the stromal cells simply hold the tumor together or if they work with cancer cells to promote the tumor's growth.

"It turns out the cancer cells are not acting alone," said Weinberg. "These stromal cells play an important role in helping these cells, and therefore tumors, to grow."

Orimo found that a particular protein produced by the stromal cells, called SDF-1, is a key player in helping tumors grow. SDF-1 interacts with a class of cells called endothelial precursor cells. Found primarily in the blood, endothelial cells travel throughout the body and aid wounded tissue by enabling new blood vessels to form, a process called angiogenesis.

The stromal cells in the breast cancer tumor produce SDF-1, which in turn persuades these endothelial precursor cells to enter the tumor. Once they do, they help the tumor to form its own robust network of blood vessels, weaving a circulatory system throughout the tumor mass. The tumor can now access the nutrients present in the host's circulating blood and can then grow unchecked.

"Essentially, these stromal cells opportunistically exploit the normal wound-healing process to benefit the tumor," said Weinberg.

Orimo plans to further investigate this process by disturbing the interactions between the stromal cells and the cancer cells, work that may yield new therapeutic insights.

Additional co-authors of the Cell paper are from the Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine and the Institute Pasteur.

This work was funded by Merck/MIT, the National Institutes of Health, the Ludwig Trust, the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Uehara Memorial Foundation, Sankyo Foundation of Life Science, and a U.S. Army Pre-doctoral Breast Cancer Fellowship.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Massachusetts Institute Of Technology. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Massachusetts Institute Of Technology. "Cancer Hijacks Body's Wound-healing Process." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 June 2005. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050608055306.htm>.
Massachusetts Institute Of Technology. (2005, June 9). Cancer Hijacks Body's Wound-healing Process. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 28, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050608055306.htm
Massachusetts Institute Of Technology. "Cancer Hijacks Body's Wound-healing Process." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2005/06/050608055306.htm (accessed July 28, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Monday, July 28, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

Deadly Ebola Virus Threatens West Africa

AP (July 28, 2014) West African nations and international health organizations are working to contain the largest Ebola outbreak in history. It's one of the deadliest diseases known to man, but the CDC says it's unlikely to spread in the U.S. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

$15B Deal on Vets' Health Care Reached

AP (July 28, 2014) A bipartisan deal to improve veterans health care would authorize at least $15 billion in emergency spending to fix a veterans program scandalized by long patient wait times and falsified records. (July 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Two Americans Contract Ebola in Liberia

Reuters - US Online Video (July 28, 2014) Two American aid workers in Liberia test positive for Ebola while working to combat the deadliest outbreak of the virus ever. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating

AP (July 28, 2014) Classes are being offered nationwide to encourage African Americans to learn about cooking fresh foods based on traditional African cuisine. The program is trying to combat obesity, heart disease and other ailments often linked to diet. (July 28) Video provided by AP
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:
from the past week

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