New Research Might Explain How Prostate Cancer Becomes Lethal

New Research Might Explain How Prostate Cancer Becomes Lethal
Clearing how a normal and healthy cell becomes cancerous is one of the keys to beat cancer. Understanding the underlying mechanisms behind this process will help not only to better diagnose cancer but also to develop less toxic and more effective therapies. A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has cleared an unprecedented mechanism for prostate cancer progression. Researchers and doctors at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center identified two new key players in the development of prostate cancer: PCA3 and PRUNE2, that come from the same site within the genome. They physically interact and regulate each other’s activity. Renata Pasqualini, senior co-author of the study said: “It’s a completely new regulatory system." Wadih Arap, Pasqualini's husband who is also a researcher in the project, added: “We have shown in animals that if we lower PCA3 [in the prostate cells] the animals develop smaller tumors. If we increase PRUNE2, they develop smaller tumors; indeed, it is the first time that a function for the FDA-approved, clinically-used PCA3 biomarker was discovered." Webster Cavenee, Director of the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, noted this work "essentially enables the first understanding of molecular mechanisms related to the PCA3/PRUNE2
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Isaura Santos graduated with a BS in Cell and Molecular Biology from Universidade Nova de Lisboa and a MA in Communication, Culture and Information Technologies from University Institute of Lisbon (ISCTE-IUL). Her professional interests include science communication, public awareness of science and communication of science through entertainment.

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