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article imageResearch indicates potential lung cancer breakthrough

By Tim Sandle     Oct 30, 2013 in Health
One trigger for lung cancer is a forced merger of two normally separate genes. New research indicates that treating the cells with a compound that blocks a protein can potentially prevent a tumor from forming.
With the merging of two ordinarily separate genes triggering some forms of lung cancer, scientists have proposed treating such cells with a compound that blocks a protein encoded by one of those genes (called NTRK1). This treatment causes the cells to die.
Lung cancer is a disease characterized by uncontrolled cell growth in tissues of the lung. If left untreated, this growth can spread beyond the lung in a process called metastasis into nearby tissue or other parts of the body.
The type of cancer targeted is lung adenocarcinomas (a form of non-small cell lung cancer). To measure the effectiveness of the protein-blocking treatment, a research group examined tumor samples from 36 patients. In lab studies, the investigators mixed various protein inhibiting agents into lung cancer cells containing the merged genes. The result was a dampening of gene activity and the death of the cancer cells.
The research was undertaken by scientists based at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the University of Colorado Cancer Center. The results have been published in the journal Nature Medicine in a paper titled “Oncogenic and drug-sensitive NTRK1 rearrangements in lung cancer.”
More about Lung cancer, Cells, Cancer, Tumor, Genes
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