Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Zinc Transporters Regulate Pancreatic Cancer

Date:
November 14, 2007
Source:
Baylor College of Medicine
Summary:
Zinc, an important trace element for healthy growth and development, can be related to pancreatic cancer. Too much ZIP4, a molecule that enables the transport of zinc into cells, promotes the growth and spread of pancreatic tumors cells, according to scientists.

Zinc, an important trace element for healthy growth and development, can be related to pancreatic cancer. Too much ZIP4, a molecule that enables the transport of zinc into cells, promotes the growth and spread of pancreatic tumors cells, said a group of researchers from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and the University of Florida in Gainesville, in a report which appears online November 12 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

"Zinc plays a critical role in our bodies functioning properly," said Dr. Min Li, assistant professor of the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery at BCM, and lead author of the study. "Zinc must be regulated through proteins called zinc transporters to keep us healthy."

A previous study by one of Li's collaborators, Dr. Craig Logsdon, professor and Lockton Distinguished Professor for Pancreatic Cancer Research at M.D. Anderson, identified high levels of ZIP4 in pancreatic cancer tissue. Li's current study confirmed those findings and also showed that overexpressed ZIP4 increases zinc uptake by the cell, which results in significantly increased tumor growth.

"We need to put these in a big picture and look at the zinc and zinc transporters as a whole in regulating pancreatic cancer growth. There is no simple answer at this point on the role zinc itself is playing," said Li.

"This study shows strong evidence that the zinc transporter is over expressed in pancreatic cancer," said Dr. Changyi (Johnny) Chen, Molecular Surgery Endowed Chair, professor of surgery and vice chair for research in the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery at BCM. "Our next step for research will ask why this happens in pancreatic cancer."

Results showed that 16 of the 17 pancreatic cancer specimens and seven of the eight cell lines grown in the laboratory had higher levels of ZIP4 than healthy tissues and normal pancreatic ductal cells. Researchers then introduced ZIP4 protein into the one pancreatic cancer cell line that did not already over express the molecule. Compared to the original line, the new cells accumulated 73 percent more zinc and significantly increased tumor growth.

This is the first comprehensive study to focus on pancreatic cancer and zinc transporters which has not been previously described. More research is needed before doctors know if limiting or targeting zinc or ZIP4 would affect the progression of pancreatic cancer.

"This study has tremendous impact on pancreatic cancer research because it not only suggests a novel diagnostic marker, but also indicates a candidate for cancer vaccine development" said Dr. Qizhi (Cathy) Yao, professor of the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery and molecular virology & microbiology at BCM.

"Identifying this molecule as being related to tumor growth opens up a door for us, "said Logsdon. "Our hope is that this will lead to a target for new treatments and therapies."

Others at BCM who took part in this study include Drs. Yuqing Zhang, Uddalak Bharadwaj, Hao Wang, Xinwen Wang, Sheng Zhang, William E. Fisher and F. Charles Brunicardi. Also contributing to the research, Dr. Zijuan Liu of Oakland University, and Drs. Robert J. Cousins, Juan P. Liuzzi and Shou-Mei Chang of the University of Florida.

Funding for this study came from the American Cancer Society, the MacDonald Research Fund, the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery at BCM and the National Institutes of Health.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Baylor College of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Baylor College of Medicine. "Zinc Transporters Regulate Pancreatic Cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 November 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071112172150.htm>.
Baylor College of Medicine. (2007, November 14). Zinc Transporters Regulate Pancreatic Cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071112172150.htm
Baylor College of Medicine. "Zinc Transporters Regulate Pancreatic Cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/11/071112172150.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thousands Of Vials Of SARS Virus Go Missing

Thousands Of Vials Of SARS Virus Go Missing

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A research institute in Paris somehow misplaced more than 2,000 vials of the deadly SARS virus. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Formerly Conjoined Twins Released From Dallas Hospital

Formerly Conjoined Twins Released From Dallas Hospital

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) Conjoined twins Emmett and Owen Ezell were separated by doctors in August. Now, nearly nine months later, they're being released from the hospital. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) The ebola virus outbreak in West Africa is now linked to 121 deaths. Health officials fear the virus will continue to spread in urban areas. Video provided by Newsy
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