Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

COUP-TFII sparks prostate cancer progression

Date:
November 28, 2012
Source:
Baylor College of Medicine
Summary:
Which cancers are essentially indolent and present no risk and which are life threatening? Which can be watched and which need aggressive treatment? A group of medical researchers think a receptor called COUP-TFII that they have long studied may point the way to an answer.

Prostate cancer presents a dilemma for patients and the physicians who treat them. Which cancers are essentially indolent and present no risk and which are life threatening? Which can be watched and which need aggressive treatment?

Drs. Ming-Jer and Sophia Tsai, both professors in the department of molecular and cellular biology at Baylor College of Medicine, think a receptor called COUP-TFII that they have long studied may point the way to an answer. In a study that appears online in the journal Nature, they show that high levels (overexpression) of COUP-TFII can overcome a natural barrier to progression of prostate cancer, allowing tumor cells to grow and spread throughout the body -- a process called metastasis.

Understanding the COUP-TFII receptor

"Levels of COUP-TFII provide a good prognostic marker for prostate cancer when added to other known markers of the disease," said Dr. Ming-Jer Tsai.

"COUP-TFII is an important 'second hit' for the progression of prostate cancer and metastasis," said Dr. Sophia Tsai. In other words, one "hit" or mutation might start the process of cells becoming cancerous. The second "hit" would make them more aggressive.

In studies of patient samples, loss of a protein called PTEN or mutations in another signaling pathway called PI3K show up in prostate tumors. However, tumors in which PTEN is lost can remain indolent. One theory is that loss of PTEN increases TGF-beta signaling, which creates a barrier to prostate cancer progression.

Significance of PTEN protein

The Tsais' studies in mice that lack PTEN show that loss of COUP-TFII inhibits the development of prostate tumors in the animals. When mice have a gene that produces insufficient levels of PTEN, COUP-TFII overexpression enhances prostate tumor progression. Further studies in mice that lost PTEN showed that high levels of COUP-TFII promoted the metastatic spread of the prostate cancer.

Studies in cell cultures and in human tissues confirmed the activity of COUP-TFII in promoting a more aggressive form of prostate cancer that could spread and metastasize.

The next step is find out how to inhibit COUP-TFII and prevent so-called indolent prostate cancers from becoming more aggressive, said Ming-Jer Tsai.

Others who took part in this work include Jun Qin, San-Pin Wu, Fangyan Dai, Xin Xie, Chiang-Min Cheng, Chad J. Creighton, Anna Frolov, Gustavo Ayala, Xia Lin, Xin-Hua Feng and, Michael M. Ittmann, all of BCM and Shaw-Jenq Tsai of National Cheng Kung University College of Medicine in Tainan, Taiwan. Ayala is now with the University of Texas Medical School at Houston.

Funding for this study came from the National Institutes of Health (NIH DK62434, DK59820, DK45641 and HL76448).

Dr. Sophia Tsai holds the Gordon Cain Professorship and Dr. Ming-Jer Tsai holds the Charles C. Bell, Jr. and Distinguished Service Professorship in Cell Biology.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Jun Qin, San-Pin Wu, Chad J. Creighton, Fangyan Dai, Xin Xie, Chiang-Min Cheng, Anna Frolov, Gustavo Ayala, Xia Lin, Xin-Hua Feng, Michael M. Ittmann, Shaw-Jenq Tsai, Ming-Jer Tsai, Sophia Y. Tsai. COUP-TFII inhibits TGF-β-induced growth barrier to promote prostate tumorigenesis. Nature, 2012; DOI: 10.1038/nature11674

Cite This Page:

Baylor College of Medicine. "COUP-TFII sparks prostate cancer progression." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 28 November 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121128132257.htm>.
Baylor College of Medicine. (2012, November 28). COUP-TFII sparks prostate cancer progression. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121128132257.htm
Baylor College of Medicine. "COUP-TFII sparks prostate cancer progression." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/11/121128132257.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

Reuters - US Online Video (July 31, 2014) The Republican-led House of Representatives votes to sue President Obama, accusing him of overstepping his executive authority in making changes to the Affordable Care Act. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite Health Questions, E-Cigs Are Beneficial: Study

Despite Health Questions, E-Cigs Are Beneficial: Study

Newsy (July 31, 2014) Citing 81 previous studies, new research out of London suggests the benefits of smoking e-cigarettes instead of regular ones outweighs the risks. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama 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:
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