Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Prion Protein Identified As Novel Early Pancreatic Cancer Biomarker

Date:
August 18, 2009
Source:
Case Western Reserve University
Summary:
Mad cow disease is caused by the accumulation of an abnormal protein, the prion, in the brain of an affected patient. Outside of the brain, very little is known about prions. Researchers have, for the first time, identified the prion as a biomarker for pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer is one of the most deadly cancers in humans; the five year survival rate is less than 10 percent.

Mad cow disease is caused by the accumulation of an abnormal protein, the prion, in the brain of an affected patient. Outside of the brain, very little is known about prions. Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, researchers have, for the first time, identified the prion as a biomarker for pancreatic cancer. Pancreatic cancer is one of the most deadly cancers in humans; the five year survival rate is less than 10 percent.

Related Articles


Chaoyang Li, Ph.D., Wei Xin, M.D., and professor of pathology, Man-Sun Sy, Ph.D., discovered the mechanism by which prions causes tumors to grow more aggressively. They published these findings in the September issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

Unlike normal cells, in human pancreatic cancer cells the prion is incompletely processed and binds to a molecule inside the cell known as filamin A. Filamin A is an important regulator of the cell's skeleton and its signaling machineries. The binding of the incompletely processed prion to filamin A disrupts the cell's organization and signaling. As a result, the tumor cells grow more aggressively. On the other hand, when the prion level is reduced, the tumor cell loses its ability to grow in tissue culture and in animals. Most importantly, Dr. Li, et al. found that a subpopulation of patients had incompletely processed prion protein in their pancreatic cancer. This subgroup of patients had significantly shorter survival compared to patients whose tumors do not have prion.

According to Dr. Sy, "Currently there is no early diagnostic marker for pancreatic cancer. Detection of the incompletely processed prion may provide such a marker. Preventing the binding of prion to filamin A may open new avenues for therapeutic intervention of this deadly disease."

Next, Drs. Li and Sy will look to determine if this type of prion protein expression is seen in other types of cancer.


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Case Western Reserve University. "Prion Protein Identified As Novel Early Pancreatic Cancer Biomarker." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 18 August 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090817184439.htm>.
Case Western Reserve University. (2009, August 18). Prion Protein Identified As Novel Early Pancreatic Cancer Biomarker. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 30, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090817184439.htm
Case Western Reserve University. "Prion Protein Identified As Novel Early Pancreatic Cancer Biomarker." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090817184439.htm (accessed March 30, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, March 30, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

S. Leone in New Anti-Ebola Lockdown

AFP (Mar. 28, 2015) Sierra Leone imposed a three-day nationwide lockdown Friday for the second time in six months in a bid to prevent a resurgence of the deadly Ebola virus. Duration: 01:17 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

These Popular Antibiotics Can Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

Newsy (Mar. 27, 2015) A popular class of antibiotic can leave patients in severe pain and even result in permanent nerve damage. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone in Ebola Lockdown

Sierra Leone in Ebola Lockdown

Reuters - News Video Online (Mar. 27, 2015) Millions of people in Sierra Leone are urged to stay at home in a three-day lockdown to help end the country&apos;s Ebola outbreak. Paul Chapman reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

WH Plan to Fight Antibiotic-Resistant Germs

AP (Mar. 27, 2015) The White House on Friday announced a five-year plan to fight the threat posed by antibiotic-resistant bacteria amid fears that once-treatable germs could become deadly. (March 27) Video provided by AP
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