We've updated our Privacy Policy to make it clearer how we use your personal data.

We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. You can read our Cookie Policy here.

Cancer Cells Adjust Their "Velcro" To Enhance Their Spread

Cancer Cells Adjust Their "Velcro" To Enhance Their Spread

Cancer Cells Adjust Their "Velcro" To Enhance Their Spread

Cancer Cells Adjust Their "Velcro" To Enhance Their Spread

Read time:

Want a FREE PDF version of This News Story?

Complete the form below and we will email you a PDF version of "Cancer Cells Adjust Their "Velcro" To Enhance Their Spread"

First Name*
Last Name*
Email Address*
Company Type*
Job Function*
Would you like to receive further email communication from Technology Networks?

Technology Networks Ltd. needs the contact information you provide to us to contact you about our products and services. You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For information on how to unsubscribe, as well as our privacy practices and commitment to protecting your privacy, check out our Privacy Policy

Cancer cells remain clumped together via a sort of 'Velcro' which allows them to adhere to each other wherever they appear. In order for cancer cells to leave a tumour and spread throughout the body during metastatic processes, cancer cells must reduce their adhesion and increase their ability to migrate. They can do this by changing the amount and type of proteins on their surface.

University of Louvain (UCLouvain) research conducted by Henri-François Renard and François Tyckaert and directed by Professor Pierre Morsomme targeted these surface proteins, particularly one called CD166, a kind of microscopic 'Velcro' which allows the cells to stick together.

UCLouvain researchers observed that certain cancer cells are, in fact, capable of decreasing the abundance of this 'Velcro' (CD166) on their surface. More specifically, these cells have found a way to reduce the adhesion of their surface by redirecting it into small internal vesicles: this is a mechanism called endocytosis, which UCLouvain's researchers highlighted in their study published in the prestigious scientific journal Nature Communications.

If there is less adhesion, owing to less 'Velcro' (CD166) on the surface of cancer cells, they stick together less and therefore migrate more easily.

Next steps?

This fundamental mechanism still has many secrets to reveal. But UCLouvain researchers hypothesise that it could contribute to the formation of metastases which allow cancer to spread. And who knows, in the future this will perhaps make it possible to develop new solutions that block metastases and thus slow down the development of certain cancers.

Reference: Renard, H., Tyckaert, F., Lo Giudice, C. et al. (2020) Endophilin-A3 and Galectin-8 control the clathrin-independent endocytosis of CD166. Nat Commun. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-15303-y

This article has been republished from the following materials. Note: material may have been edited for length and content. For further information, please contact the cited source.