Corporate Banner
Satellite Banner
Biomolecular Screening
Scientific Community
 
Become a Member | Sign in
Home>News>This Article
  News
Return

Gene's function May Give New Target for Cancer Drugs

Published: Thursday, September 13, 2012
Last Updated: Thursday, September 13, 2012
Bookmark and Share
Scientists have determined that a gene long known to be involved in cancer cell formation and chemotherapy resistance is key to proper RNA creation, and could one day lead to new therapies and drug targets.

The human gene p68 has long been recognized as an oncogene, one associated with cancer formation, but its function was unknown. Elizabeth Tran, a Purdue biochemist, found that misregulation of p68 causes problems with RNA formation and arrangement, possibly leading to chromosomal abnormalities.

Tran, whose findings were published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, used a gene in baker's yeast - Dbp2 – as a model to understand p68's function.

"Our results show that Dbp2, and likely p68, functions in proper formation of RNA. Our evidence suggests that Dbp2 keeps the RNA from folding improperly," Tran said. "We think that misfolded RNA may not be released from the DNA, causing problems with the DNA itself."

Genes send instructions to proteins to carry out functions. To do that, DNA is decoded into RNA, which then take that code to proteins.

Tran found that Dbp2 is a crucial part of that RNA creation process. Both Dbp2 and p68 encode an enzyme called an RNA helicase. The RNA helicase enzyme controls the structure and arrangement of RNA, which must be separated from DNA before it takes instructions to proteins.

In this case, Tran showed that misregulated Dbp2 and p68 cause defects in DNA, most likely from incorrect separation of RNA from the DNA. DNA that doesn't fold properly is vulnerable to chromosomes breaking or fusing, problems known to cause a host of diseases.

"The hallmark of cancer is aberrant or even broken DNA," Tran said. "If this process is important for RNA structure and DNA integrity, we may have found a clue as to why misregulation of P68 causes cancer."

Although the study does not address the connection between p68 and cancer, it lays the foundation for future studies. Next, Tran plans to use biochemical experiments to determine exactly how Dbp2 works in a cell and what changes it makes to RNA.

"We need to know what RNAs are recognized by Dbp2 to find how specific genes are affected," Tran said. "We also need to discover what other proteins may function in similar processes and simply haven't been discovered to date."

The National Institutes of Health, Purdue Agriculture and the Purdue University Center for Cancer Research, of which Tran is a member, funded the work. Tran's study was published as a paper of the week in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, with an author profile of Sara C. Cloutier, the paper's first author and Tran's laboratory research assistant.


Further Information
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 2,500+ scientific posters on ePosters
  • More than 3,700+ 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.

Related Content

New Technique Yields Drug, Biomedical Test Results in One Minute
Slug flow microextraction makes it possible to quickly detect the presence of drugs or to monitor certain medical conditions using only a single drop of blood or urine.
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Purdue, Houston Methodist to Take Drug Discoveries from the Bench Top to the Bedside
The planned collaboration on research and educational initiatives includes clinical trials of drugs developed at Purdue.
Monday, March 17, 2014
Purdue to Accelerate Drug Discovery, Development
Purdue Center for Drug Discovery adds to Purdue's strengths and the capacity to translate basic research into life-changing treatments.
Monday, September 16, 2013
Yeast Study Yields Potential for New Cholesterol, Anti-Fungal Drugs
While studying a mutant strain of yeast, Purdue University researchers may have found a new target for drugs to combat cholesterol and fungal diseases.
Thursday, February 28, 2013
MolecularHUB Gives Scientific Information on Fast-moving Diseases
A scientific gateway website that will provide molecular and genetic information on infectious and emerging diseases has been released by Purdue University.
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Biochip Helps Study Living Cells
The biochip could speed scientific research, which could accelerate drug development for muscle and nerve disorders.
Friday, November 10, 2006
Scientific News
Promising Class of New Cancer Drugs Cause Memory Loss in Mice
New findings from The Rockefeller University suggest that the original version of BET inhibitors causes molecular changes in mouse neurons, and can lead to memory loss in mice that receive it.
Electrical Control of Cancer Cells
Research led by scientists at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) has revealed a new electrical mechanism that can control these switches.
Signature of Microbiomes Linked to Schizophrenia
Studying microbiomes in throat may help identify causes and treatments of brain disorder.
Inflammation Linked to Colon Cancer Metastasis
A new Arizona State University research study led by Biodesign Institute executive director Raymond DuBois has identified for the first time the details of how inflammation triggers colon cancer cells to spread to other organs, or metastasize.
Structural Discoveries Could Aid in Better Drug Design
Scientists have uncovered the structural details of how some proteins interact to turn two different signals into a single integrated output.
Determining the Age of Fingerprints
Watch the imprint of a tire track in soft mud, and it will slowly blur, the ridges of the pattern gradually flowing into the valleys. Researchers have tested the theory that a similar effect could be used to give forensic scientists a way to date fingerprints.
Genetic Overlapping in Multiple Autoimmune Diseases May Suggest Common Therapies
CHOP genomics expert leads analysis of genetic architecture, with eye on repurposing existing drugs.
Surprising Mechanism Behind Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Uncovered
Now, scientists at TSRI have discovered that the important human pathogen Staphylococcus aureus, develops resistance to this drug by “switching on” a previously uncharacterized set of genes.
Tissue Bank Pays Dividends for Brain Cancer Research
Checking what’s in the bank – the Brisbane Breast Bank, that is – has paid dividends for UQ cancer researchers.
Researchers Publish Landmark “Basket Study”
Researchers from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK) have announced results from the first published basket study, a new form of clinical trial design that explores responses to drugs based on the specific mutations in patients’ tumors rather than where their cancer originated.
SELECTBIO

Skyscraper Banner
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
2,500+ scientific and medical posters
A library of 2,500+ scientific videos on LabTube
3,700+ scientific videos
Close
Premium CrownJOIN TECHNOLOGY NETWORKS PREMIUM FREE!