July 26, 2008

Cellular Pathway Linked to Cancer

Researchers at New York University Medical Center have identified a pathway for the development of cancer that suggests new ways of treatment.

Dr. Michele Pagano, a pathology professor at NYU School of Medicine, said the research team discovered a way in which cells respond to DNA damage by targeting proteins for disposal.

One of the major messages of this study is that we have a new pathway that responds to DNA damage, Pagano said Thursday in a statement. It is already known that the three major protein players in this pathway are deregulated in human cancers, so deregulation of this pathway is probably going to contribute to tumorigenesis (the development of cancer).

The study, published in the journal Cell, suggests a new way of sensitizing cancer cells to chemotherapy, the report said.

''Many chemotherapies work by damaging the DNA of the diseased cells in order to kill them. But if the security system we have discovered kicks, in these cells are saved and the tumor can continue to grow, Pagano told ANSA. So if we inhibit the security system in combination with chemotherapy, the chemo

can become more effective."