Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Weak link in cancer cell armor identified

Date:
November 13, 2009
Source:
Cornell University
Summary:
The seeming invincibility of cancerous tumors may be crumbling, thanks to a promising new gene therapy that eliminates the ability of certain cells to repair themselves. Researchers have discovered that inactivation of a DNA repair gene called Hus1 efficiently kills cells lacking p53 -- a gene mutated in the majority of human cancers.

The seeming invincibility of cancerous tumors may be crumbling, thanks to a promising new gene therapy that eliminates the ability of certain cells to repair themselves. Researchers at the Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine have discovered that inactivation of a DNA repair gene called Hus1 efficiently kills cells lacking p53 -- a gene mutated in the majority of human cancers.

Using a mouse model, senior author Robert Weiss, associate professor of molecular genetics, first author and graduate student Stephanie Yazinski and colleagues explored how cells respond when both genes are inhibited. When they inactivated the Hus1 gene in healthy mammary gland tissues, the researchers report, it caused genome damage and cell death. And when they studied the effects of Hus1 inactivation in p53-deficient cells, which are highly resistant to cell death, they discovered that the ability of Hus1 inactivation to kill cells was even greater.

The study is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (Nov. 9).

"Our work contributes to an important new understanding of cancer cells and their weaknesses," Weiss said. "The mutations that allow cancer cells to divide uncontrollably also make the cancer cells more dependent on certain cellular processes. We were able to exploit one such dependency of p53-deficient cells and could efficiently kill these cells by inhibiting Hus1."

Weiss and his team have new experiments under way. "We've proven the power of inhibiting both pathways in normal tissue," said Weiss. "Now we want to extend our knowledge to cancerous tissue and determine if the loss of Hus1 will impact the ability of cancers with p53 mutations to take hold and grow."

Weiss's research was funded by the National Institutes of Health and is now funded through 2013 in part by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).


Story Source:

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


Cite This Page:

Cornell University. "Weak link in cancer cell armor identified." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 November 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091112162838.htm>.
Cornell University. (2009, November 13). Weak link in cancer cell armor identified. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091112162838.htm
Cornell University. "Weak link in cancer cell armor identified." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/11/091112162838.htm (accessed August 27, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Predicting Heart Transplant Rejection With a Blood Test

Predicting Heart Transplant Rejection With a Blood Test

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) Now a new approach to rejection of donor organs could change the way doctors predict transplant rejection…without expensive, invasive procedures. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Better Braces That Vibrate

Better Braces That Vibrate

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) The length of time you have to keep your braces on could be cut in half thanks to a new device that speeds up the process. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone App Tracks Your Heart Rate

Smartphone App Tracks Your Heart Rate

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) A new app that can track your heart rate 24/7 is available for download in your app store and its convenience could save your life. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stroke in Young Adults

Stroke in Young Adults

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) A stroke can happen at any time and affect anyone regardless of age. This mother chose to give her son independence and continue to live a normal life after he had a stroke at 18 years old. Video provided by Ivanhoe
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