Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Genotyping & Gene Expression
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

microRNA Cooperation Mutes Breast Cancer Oncogenes

Published: Friday, May 10, 2013
Last Updated: Friday, May 10, 2013
Bookmark and Share
Turning up a few microRNAs a little may offer as much anti-breast-cancer activity as turning up one microRNA a lot – and without the unwanted side effects.

It’s a bit like the classic thought experiment known as the “tumor problem” formulated by Karl Dunker in 1945 and used frequently in the problem-solving literature: Imagine a person suffers from a malignant tumor in the center of her body. Radiation strong enough to kill the tumor kills any healthy tissue through which it passes. Without operating or killing healthy tissue, how can a doctor use radiation to kill the tumor?

The answer is to target the tumor from many angles – many weak rays of radiation pass harmlessly through healthy tissue, but their combined power at the point of the tumor is enough to kill it.

In the present study, CU Cancer Center investigators used “weak” induction of multiple microRNAs that combined from many angles to regulate the known breast cancer oncogenes erbB2/erbB3 (the “tumor”) without regulating non-target genes (the “healthy tissue”).

“Imagine you have a microRNA that regulates genes A and B. Then you have another microRNA that regulates genes B and C. You amplify each microRNA to a degree that doesn’t effect gene A or C, but their combined effect regulates gene B,” says Bolin Liu, MD, assistant professor in the Department of Pathology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.

microRNA is an attractive target in cancer therapy – more microRNA can lead to less gene expression, turning down or off the oncogenes that cause cancer. However, to get the desired effect on gene expression frequently requires enhancing microRNA expression 100- or 1,000-fold (or more). And the induced microRNA likely has other genetic targets – it will turn down other genes as well as the oncogene, sometimes with unfortunate consequences.

“The current study showed that two microRNAs enhanced only 3-to-6 times their natural expression could cooperate to regulate an oncogene that had previously only been affected by a microRNA enhanced by many, many times this amount,” Liu says.

Specifically, the group’s work shows that no one alone, but any two of the three microRNAs that regulate erbB2/erbB3 expression can affect the levels of proteins produced by the genes. These are miR-125a, miR-15b, and miR-205, which act in concert to regulate the expression of erbB2/erbB3, which are cancer-causing products of the oncogenes.

But in general, the group’s novel technique could have implications far past erbB2/erbB3, allowing researchers and eventually doctors to mute the genes they want to mute without also dampening the expression of genes regulated by only one or only the other microRNA partner.


Further Information

Join For Free

Access to this exclusive content is for Technology Networks Premium members only.

Join Technology Networks Premium for free access to:

  • Exclusive articles
  • Presentations from international conferences
  • Over 3,200+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 4,700+ scientific videos on LabTube
  • 35 community eNewsletters


Sign In



Forgotten your details? Click Here
If you are not a member you can join here

*Please note: By logging into TechnologyNetworks.com you agree to accept the use of cookies. To find out more about the cookies we use and how to delete them, see our privacy policy.


Scientific News
New Cancer Drug Target in Dual-Function Protein
Scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have identified a protein that launches cancer growth and appears to contribute to higher mortality in breast cancer patients.
Contagious Cancers Are Spreading in Shellfish
Direct transmission of cancer among some marine animals may be more common than once thought, suggests a new study published in Nature by researchers at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC).
Contagious Cancers Are Spreading in Shellfish
Direct transmission of cancer among some marine animals may be more common than once thought, suggests a new study published in Nature by researchers at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC).
Fix for 3-Billion-Year-Old Genetic Error
Researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have developed a fix that allows RNA to accurately proofread for the first time.
“Amazing Protein Diversity” Discovered in Maize
The genome of the corn plant – or maize, as it’s called almost everywhere except the US – “is a lot more exciting” than scientists have previously believed. So says the lead scientist in a new effort to analyze and annotate the depth of the plant’s genetic resources.
Higher Frequency of Huntington's Disease Mutations Discovered
University of Aberdeen study shows that the gene change that causes Huntington's disease is much more common than previously thought.
Revealing the Genetic Causes of Bowel Cancer
A landmark study has given the most detailed picture yet of the genetics of bowel cancer — the UK's fourth most common cancer.
Tumor Cells Develop Predictable Characteristics
Scientists have discovered that cancer cells at the edge of a tumor that are close to the surrounding environment are predictably different from the cells within the interior of the tumor.
New Imaging Method Reveals Nanoscale Details about DNA
Enhancement to super-resolution microscopy shows orientation of individual molecules, providing a new window into DNA’s structure and dynamics.
Genetic Research Can Significantly Improve Drug Development
With drug development costs topping $1.2bn (£850 million) to get a single treatment to the point it can be sold and used in the clinic, could genetic analysis save hundreds of millions of dollars?
Skyscraper Banner

SELECTBIO Market Reports
Go to LabTube
Go to eposters
 
Access to the latest scientific news
Exclusive articles
Upload and share your posters on ePosters
Latest presentations and webinars
View a library of 1,800+ scientific and medical posters
3,200+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
4,700+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FOR FREE!