Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Mechanism that determines prostate cancer aggressiveness uncovered

Date:
July 13, 2010
Source:
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute
Summary:
A team of investigators has identified a series of proteins that might make it easier for doctors to better diagnose the more metastatic forms of prostate cancer.

Some types of prostate tumors are more aggressive and more likely to metastasize than others. Nearly one-third of these aggressive tumors contain a small nest of especially dangerous cells known as neuroendocrine-type cells. More rarely, some aggressive prostate tumors are made up entirely of neuroendocrine-type cells. The presence of neuroendocrine-type cancer cells is associated with a poor prognosis, but spotting these rare cells can be like finding a needle in a haystack.

Now, in a study published in the July 13 issue of Cancer Cell, a team of investigators led by Ze'ev Ronai, Ph.D. at Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (Sanford-Burnham) has identified a series of proteins that might make it easier for doctors to better diagnose the more metastatic forms of prostate cancer.

"In identifying this protein pathway, which determines the formation of neuroendocrine tumors, we've identified new markers that can be used to distinguish the dangerous cells and find new targets for therapy," said Dr. Ronai, associate director of Sanford-Burnham's National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center.

This study uncovers a protein named Siah2, which initiates a cascade of molecular events that turns a non-malignant tumor into a metastatic neuroendocrine tumor. In collaboration with four other medical centers across the United States, Dr. Ronai and his colleagues analyzed human prostate cancer samples and found that Siah2 and the other proteins it triggers is detected more often in the aggressive neuroendocrine forms of prostate tumors than in other types. By acting as markers for particularly aggressive prostate cancers, Siah2 and its partners could provide doctors with an early warning sign for tumors that are likely to metastasize.

To further validate these findings, the Siah2 gene was inactivated in mice already prone to developing aggressive prostate tumors. Although benign growths still appeared, they failed to develop into neuroendocrine tumors.

"When we inhibit the Siah2 pathway in mice, we eliminate the neuroendocrine-type cells from the prostate tumors," explained Jianfei Qi, Ph.D., postdoctoral researcher in Dr. Ronai's laboratory and first author of the study. "Since prostate cancers containing neuroendocrine-type cells are resistant to current therapies, we are pleased to find that targeting Siah2 might provide an alternate approach to treating this disease."

Members of the Sanford-Burnham research team are now looking for chemical compounds that inhibit the activity of Siah2 or other proteins along the chain. They hope to find a new drug that will block the series of molecular events leading to the formation of neuroendocrine-type cancer cells, thus keeping prostate tumors in check.

This study was supported by a grant from the National Cancer Institute, a division of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).



Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Qi J, Nakayama K, Cardiff RD, Borowsky AD, Kaul K, Williams R, Krajewski S, Mercola D, Carpenter PM, Bowtell D, Ronai ZA. Siah2-dependent concerted activity of HIF & FoxA2 regulates formation of neuroendocrine phenotype & neuroendocrine prostate tumors. Cancer Cell, July 13, 2010

Cite This Page:

Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute. "Mechanism that determines prostate cancer aggressiveness uncovered." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 July 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100712121836.htm>.
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute. (2010, July 13). Mechanism that determines prostate cancer aggressiveness uncovered. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100712121836.htm
Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute. "Mechanism that determines prostate cancer aggressiveness uncovered." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/07/100712121836.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

Courts Conflicted Over Healthcare Law

AP (July 22, 2014) Two federal appeals courts issued conflicting rulings Tuesday on the legality of the federally-run healthcare exchange that operates in 36 states. (July 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Why Do People Believe We Only Use 10 Percent Of Our Brains?

Newsy (July 22, 2014) The new sci-fi thriller "Lucy" is making people question whether we really use all our brainpower. But, as scientists have insisted for years, we do. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Scientists Find New Way To Make Human Platelets

Newsy (July 22, 2014) Boston scientists have discovered a new way to create fully functioning human platelets using a bioreactor and human stem cells. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
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