Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New Enzyme In Cancer Growth Discovered

Date:
December 8, 2008
Source:
University of Oklahoma
Summary:
Researchers have discovered a new enzyme that not only affects the blood, but seems to play a primary role in how cancer tumors expand and spread throughout the body.

While studying the mechanics of blood clots, researchers at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center discovered a new enzyme that not only affects the blood, but seems to play a primary role in how cancer tumors expand and spread throughout the body.

Related Articles


A research group at OU led by Patrick McKee first discovered the enzyme called sFAP in plasma. After studying the biochemical makeup of the protein and identifying the gene that controlled its function, they began to search gene sequencing databases worldwide to find what it was. They didn’t find the enzyme listed for blood, but got a match with a virtually identical protein known to cause cell growth in tissue, including in cancer. With McKee’s discovery that the protein also exists in blood, scientists have a new avenue to study the spread of cancer.

“One thing all cancer cells need as they grow is something that acts as scaffolding. They have to attach to the scaffolding to divide and migrate. This enzyme excavates space around a malignancy and helps create the scaffolding,” said McKee, M.D., principle investigator on the project.

The main function of the original FAP protein that was known to exist in tissue is to accelerate tissue growth and expand cells during fetal development, the healing of severe wounds and during growth of selected cancers such as breast, lung, pancreatic and colon.

Other than in these situations, the original form of FAP is not normally expressed in tissues at all. When it does appear, the protein helps activated fibroblasts, which growing cancer cells are able to recruit and stimulate to multiply within the malignancy itself. This creates space and the framework on which cancer cells attach, divide and eventually spread.

If FAP could be inhibited, then cancer growth could be slowed or halted, which in combination with chemotherapy or radiation might offer the potential to actually cure the malignancy, the OU team believes.

The research appeared in recent issues of the journal Blood and the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis.

McKee and his group of investigators hold one patent on the enzyme and three more are under review for the development of an inhibitor. Based on the discovery and numerous publications of their work, the OU Health Sciences Center recently received a $365,000 federal grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to work on an inhibitor with cancer investigators at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

University of Oklahoma. "New Enzyme In Cancer Growth Discovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 December 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081203184932.htm>.
University of Oklahoma. (2008, December 8). New Enzyme In Cancer Growth Discovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved December 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081203184932.htm
University of Oklahoma. "New Enzyme In Cancer Growth Discovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081203184932.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
The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

The Best Protein-Filled Foods to Energize You for the New Year

Buzz60 (Dec. 19, 2014) The new year is coming and nothing will energize you more for 2015 than protein-filled foods. Fitness and nutrition expert John Basedow (@JohnBasedow) gives his favorite high protein foods that will help you build muscle, lose fat and have endless energy. 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