Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Prostate Cancer Spurs New Nerves

Date:
December 9, 2008
Source:
Baylor College of Medicine
Summary:
Prostate cancer -- and perhaps other cancers -- promotes the growth of new nerves and the branching axons that carry their messages, a finding associated with more aggressive tumors, said researchers in the journal Clinical Cancer Research.

Prostate cancer – and perhaps other cancers – promotes the growth of new nerves and the branching axons that carry their messages, a finding associated with more aggressive tumors, said researchers from Baylor College of Medicine in the first report of the phenomenon that appears today in the journal Clinical Cancer Research.

Related Articles


Previous research showed that prostate cancer follows the growth of nerves, but this is the first time that scientists have demonstrated that the tumors actually promote nerve growth.

"This is the first report of this phenomenon," said Dr. Gustavo Ayala, professor of pathology and urology at BCM and first author of the article. "It represents an important new target in prostate cancer treatment, as prostate cancers are more aggressive when neurogenesis is present."

Ayala noted that this finding is comparable to the discovery of angiogenesis or the growth of new blood vessels. Both are part of the wound repair process.

"We also believe that axongenesis and neurogenesis is found not only in prostate cancer, but is potentially a more global phenomenon, particularly relating to those cancers that grow along nerve paths," said Ayala, also a researcher in the Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center at BCM.

Ayala and his colleagues studied the neurogenesis in tissue culture, in human tissues of patients who had had prostate cancer and compared to prostate tissues from patients who had died of other ailments. They calculated the density of nerves in human prostate tissues, including those with prostate cancer. They found that nerve density was considerably higher in patients with prostate cancer and in precancerous lesions. As part of the study, he used an entire prostate gland to reconstruct the prostate and enable scientists to see the growth of nerves and axons in three-dimensions, a computerized process that took substantial continuous computer processing.

He and his colleagues have even identified a possible method of regulating the growth of new nerves and axons through a protein called semaphorin 4F. Semaphorins are embryologically active molecules that regulate nerve growth and direction. Most disappear in adults, but semaphoring 4F is active in wound repair. When prostate cancer cells overproduce semaphorin 4F, new nerves result. Blocking semaphoring 4F prevents the growth of new nerves.

Others who took part in this research include: Hong Dai, Michael Powell, Rile Li, Yi Ding, Thomas M. Wheeler, David Shine, Timothy Thompson, Dov Kadmon, BrianJ. Miles, Michael M. Ittmann and David Rowley, all of BCM. Thompson is now with The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.

Funding for this research came from the National Institutes of Health and the Tumor Microenvironment Network of the National Cancer Institute.


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. "Prostate Cancer Spurs New Nerves." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081201081719.htm>.
Baylor College of Medicine. (2008, December 9). Prostate Cancer Spurs New Nerves. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081201081719.htm
Baylor College of Medicine. "Prostate Cancer Spurs New Nerves." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081201081719.htm (accessed March 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could a $34 Smartphone Device Improve HIV Diagnosis in Africa?

Could a $34 Smartphone Device Improve HIV Diagnosis in Africa?

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Feb. 27, 2015) A dongle that plugs into a Smartphone mimics a lab-based blood test for HIV and syphilis and can detect the diseases in 15 minutes, say researchers. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor Says Head Transplants Possible Within Two Years

Doctor Says Head Transplants Possible Within Two Years

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) An Italian doctor is saying he could stick someone&apos;s head onto someone else&apos;s body. Patrick Jones (@Patrick_E_Jones) reports. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Dentist Could Help Screen You For Diabetes

How Your Dentist Could Help Screen You For Diabetes

Newsy (Feb. 27, 2015) A new study from researchers at New York University suggests dentists could soon use blood samples taken from patients&apos; mouths to test for diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
The Best Tips to Makeover Your Health

The Best Tips to Makeover Your Health

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) If you&apos;re looking to boost your health this season, there are a few quick and easy steps to prompt you for success. Krystin Goodwin (@Krystingoodwin) has the best tips to give your health a makeover this spring! 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