Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Basic Mechanism Of Skin Cancer Development Illuminated

Date:
August 10, 2009
Source:
University of Vienna
Summary:
Scientists reveal the function of a protein in the Ras signalling pathway. Their findings provide the basis for research on novel therapeutic strategies in Ras-induced skin cancers, e.g. melanoma.

Manuela Baccarini, Professor for Cell Signalling at the Centre of Molecular Biology of the University of Vienna (Max F. Perutz Laboratories) and colleagues reveal the function of a protein in the Ras signalling pathway. Their findings provide the basis for research on novel therapeutic strategies in Ras-induced skin cancers, e.g. melanoma. The results of her work are published in the scientific journal Cancer Cell.

Ras is a protein which is a master regulator of several signalling cascades in cells, and has been demonstrated to be a proto-oncogene. If the protein is mutated or misregulated by outside influences, it contributes to the development of skin cancers such as melanoma.

Skin cancer develops from a progenitor skin cell population that expands unrestrictedly (proliferation) and does not migrate from the deeper skin layers (stratum basale) to the surface (stratum corneum) to differentiate into specialized skin cells or keratinocytes. In addition, compared to normal cells, tumour cells have also lost the ability to react to "cell suicide signals" (apoptosis).

Cell differentiation decisive for melanoma development

Up until now it was believed that the crucial process for skin cancer development is the unrestricted cell proliferation of the progenitor cells. Baccarini and colleagues now show in a mouse model that the Ras signalling pathway is coupled to the Raf-1 protein. Unexpectedly, the Raf-1 protein plays a key role in the differentiation process of the progenitor skin cells and not in the proliferation as previously assumed. Raf-1 ablation induced total regression of the epidermal tumours in mice. Mice without epidermal Raf-1 did not develop skin cancer, even though the Ras pathway was active.

Enzyme complex allows novel therapeutic strategies

The disruption of the normal pathway from progenitor cell to keratinocyte allows for the possibility of skin cancer development, as cancers (eg. melanoma) frequently arise from these progenitor cells. "We showed that Raf-1 builds an enzymatic complex with the protein Rok. This complex inhibits the differentiation to a skin cell and the way is clear for skin cancer development", Manuela Baccarini explains. She also identifies novel therapeutic avenues: "In the treatment of leukaemia substances are administered which stimulate cells to differentiate, combined with chemotherapy."

This combined therapy could be used for skin cancer treatment as well, if a substance is discovered that destroys the Raf-Rok complex and therefore enables differentiation. "The search for such substances up to the clinical application is a long road", Baccarini cautions. But with the discovery of this basic mechanism of skin cancer development Manuela Baccarini and colleagues provide the basis for research on novel therapeutic strategies.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

University of Vienna. "Basic Mechanism Of Skin Cancer Development Illuminated." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 August 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090803212053.htm>.
University of Vienna. (2009, August 10). Basic Mechanism Of Skin Cancer Development Illuminated. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090803212053.htm
University of Vienna. "Basic Mechanism Of Skin Cancer Development Illuminated." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090803212053.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued new protocols for healthcare workers interacting with Ebola patients. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) — Tens of thousands of doses of experimental Ebola vaccines could be available for "real-world" testing in West Africa as soon as January as long as they are deemed safe in soon to start trials, the World Health Organization said Tuesday. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) — A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) — The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has set up new guidelines for health workers taking care of patients infected with Ebola. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
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