Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Manipulation Of Molecule Protects Intestinal Cells From Radiation

Date:
June 7, 2008
Source:
Cell Press
Summary:
A new study identifies a signaling molecule that plays a major role in radiation-induced intestinal damage. The research may lead to new strategies for protecting normal tissues from radiation during cancer therapies.

A new study identifies a signaling molecule that plays a major role in radiation-induced intestinal damage. The research, published in the June issue of the journal Cell Stem Cell, may lead to new strategies for protecting normal tissues from radiation during cancer therapies.

Although radiation is one of the most effective treatments for cancer, damage to the cells that line the gastrointestinal tract is a major limiting factor for patients undergoing pelvic or abdominal radiotherapy. The specific mechanisms that underlie radiation-induced gastrointestinal toxicity, known as gastrointestinal (GI) syndrome, are not well understood. Previous studies have suggested that damage to intestinal stem cells and/or damage to intestinal blood vessel cells, called endothelial cells, are involved in the pathogenesis of GI syndrome.

The group led by Drs. Jian Yu and Lin Zhang from the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute and School of Medicine found that the protein "p53 upregulated modulator of apoptosis" (PUMA) plays a key role in the radiation-induced damage of intestinal cells. PUMA is an established player in the apoptosis pathway, a process by which cells undergo a type of programmed self-destruction.

Dr. Yu and colleagues found that mice with a deficiency of PUMA exhibited impaired apoptosis in intestinal stem and progenitor cells, and enhanced intestinal regeneration following injury. The mutant mice thus retained better intestinal integrity and survived longer following lethal doses of radiation. Although endothelial cells displayed a rapid induction of PUMA upon exposure to radiation, deletion of the protein did not alter apoptosis in these specific cells.

These results provide a mechanistic explanation of intestinal radiosensitivity and suggest that apoptosis of epithelial cells, and not endothelial cells, is the primary event that underlies the rapid onset of GI syndrome. "We were really excited to learn that deficiency in a single gene significantly protects against GI syndrome," explains Dr. Yu. "Selectively curbing radiosensitivity in the normal tissues transiently by PUMA inhibitors might be particularly beneficial in cancer therapy."

The researchers include Wei Qiu, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Hillman Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA; Eleanor B. Carson-Walter, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY; Hongtao Liu, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Hillman Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA; Michael Epperly, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Hillman Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA; Joel S. Greenberger, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Hillman Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA; Gerard P. Zambetti, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Lauderdale, Memphis, TN; Lin Zhang, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Hillman Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA; and Jian Yu, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Hillman Cancer Center, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA .


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Cell Press. "Manipulation Of Molecule Protects Intestinal Cells From Radiation." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080604141029.htm>.
Cell Press. (2008, June 7). Manipulation Of Molecule Protects Intestinal Cells From Radiation. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080604141029.htm
Cell Press. "Manipulation Of Molecule Protects Intestinal Cells From Radiation." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080604141029.htm (accessed April 18, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Scientists Create Stem Cells From Adult Skin Cells

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) The breakthrough could mean a cure for some serious diseases and even the possibility of human cloning, but it's all still a way off. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

Obama: 8 Million Healthcare Signups

AP (Apr. 17, 2014) President Barack Obama gave a briefing Thursday announcing 8 million people have signed up under the Affordable Care Act. He blasted continued Republican efforts to repeal the law. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Is Apathy A Sign Of A Shrinking Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2014) A recent study links apathetic feelings to a smaller brain. Researchers say the results indicate a need for apathy screening for at-risk seniors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
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

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