Tag Archives: metastasis

Diabolical duo: Known breast cancer gene needs a partner to initiate and spread tumors

A study led by Princeton University researchers has revealed that the gene Metadherin — which is implicated in promoting the spread of breast cancer tumors — only stimulates tumor growth when the protein made by the gene interacts with a second protein known as SND1. (more…)

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UCLA Researchers Further Refine ‘Nanovelcro’ Device to Grab Single Cancer Cells from Blood

Improvement enables ‘liquid biopsies’ for metastatic melanoma

Researchers at UCLA report that they have refined a method they previously developed for capturing and analyzing cancer cells that break away from patients’ tumors and circulate in the blood. With the improvements to their device, which uses a Velcro-like nanoscale technology, they can now detect and isolate single cancer cells from patient blood samples for analysis.

Circulating tumor cells, or CTCs, play a crucial role in cancer metastasis, spreading from tumors to other parts of the body, where they form new tumors. When these cells are isolated from the blood early on, they can provide doctors with critical information about the type of cancer a patient has, the characteristics of the individual cancer and the potential progression of the disease. Doctors can also tell from these cells how to tailor a personalized treatment to a specific patient. (more…)

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Yale Scientists Identify Gene That Controls The Spread of Melanoma

Yale Cancer Center researchers have identified a gene in melanoma that can dramatically affect the spread of the disease. The study, published in the journal Cancer Cell, provides new insight into how melanoma metastasizes in patients with advanced disease, and which organs are most likely to be affected. These findings could potentially lead to new drug treatments.

Malignant melanoma is the most deadly form of skin cancer, accounting for 80 percent of all skin cancer deaths. Nearly all melanoma deaths are a result of metastasis, which can occur early in the course of tumor growth in the skin. (more…)

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Understanding How Cancer Spreads: Nanotech Single-Cell Monitoring Technique Could Give Insights

ANN ARBOR, Mich.— A technique that lets researchers monitor single cancer cells in real time as they float in liquid could help doctors study the breakaway tumor cells that cause metastasis. Metastasis is the process of the disease spreading through the body.

The approach, developed at the University of Michigan, could also pave the way for new types of targeted therapies that go beyond personalized medicine, researchers say. (more…)

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Blocking Rogue Gene Could Stop the Spread of Most Cancers

*Scientists at the University of East Anglia have discovered a rogue gene which – if blocked by the right drugs – could stop cancer in its tracks.*

Published on January 24, 2011, by the journal Oncogene, the discovery is a breakthrough in our understanding of how cancer spreads. It is hoped the research will lead to new drugs that halt the critical late stage of the disease when cancer cells spread to other parts of the body.

The culprit gene – known as WWP2 – is an enzymic bonding agent found inside cancer cells. It attacks and breaks down a natural inhibitor in the body which normally prevents cancer cells spreading. The UEA team found that by blocking WWP2, levels of the natural inhibitor are boosted and the cancer cells remain dormant. If a drug was developed that deactivated WWP2, conventional therapies and surgery could be used on primary tumours, with no risk of the disease taking hold eleswhere. (more…)

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