July 18, 2011
Compound Blocks Cancer-Causing Protein
(Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Researchers have developed a compound that blocks signaling from a protein implicated in many types of cancer.
The investigators examined signaling by receptor tyrosine kinase (RTK). Abnormal RTK signaling is an underlying cause of various developmental disorders and diseases, including cancer.
Interactions between large protein molecules such as Sos and Ras have been difficult to accomplish with artificial means. The scientists thought that by mimicking a key portion of Sos, they might disrupt its interactions with Ras. They observed that Sos activates Ras through a helix -- a critical portion of Sos that makes contact with Ras.
The researchers say synthetic Sos may offer a lead for the creation of pharmaceuticals that can block Sos-Ras interaction.
SOURCE: Nature Chemical Biology, July, 2011