Protein that boosts survival in colon cancer patients identified
Scientists have identified a protein that boosts survival rates in colon cancer patients and could be targeted to treat the deadly disease.
The researchers examined the level of c-Cbl in tumors that were removed from people with colon cancer. Based on the level of this protein, c-Cbl, patients were split into two groups, high c-Cbl and low c-Cbl.
This off version of c-Cbl lacked an essential function of c-Cbl called ubiquitin ligase activity. Cells that were given the "off" version of c-Cbl grew more tumors than those that were given the "on" version.
For tumours to grow and metastasise they need blood vessels.
The next step was to look at how c-Cbl affected blood vessel growth by using three experimental models - one group was normal, one group was given the c-Cbl protein and the third group was given the "off" version of the protein.
The model that was given the "off" version of c-Cbl grew more blood vessels.
"This helps us to understand the role of the ubiquitin ligase activity of c-Cbl in preventing tumours from growing and reducing tumour's ability to grow blood vessels," said Vipul Chitalia, an associate professor at Boston University.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
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