Cancer cells constantly grow and divide, which means that they need a consistent energy supply. A new study looks at how cancer derives fuel from fat cells and finds a potential mechanism to starve the tumor of its nutrition.
Visitors who walk into Deborah Giannecchini's ranch house in Modesto, California, will notice a well-tended garden, four small dogs who greet every visitor with enthusiasm and a sign that hangs prominently displayed in her living room that reads "It's never too late to live happily ever after."
University of California, Merced Professor of Systems Biology and Cancer Metabolism, Fabian Filipp, uses a multipipettor to transfer human tumor cells while explaining the process of High-throughput screening, a test to indicate which drugs and which regulators the cells respond to at the Science and Engineering Building 2 on the campus of UC Merced in Merced, Calif., on Thursday, March 2, 2017.
Gene therapy is a way of treating or preventing disease by altering the genetic instructions within an individual’s cells. Genes are responsible for virtually every aspect of cell life: they hold the code for proteins that enable cells to grow, function, and divide. When a gene is defective, it can give rise to proteins that are unable to do their job. When a gene is missing, or is overactive, important bodily functions may be impaired. The goal of gene therapy is to correct such problems by fixing them at the source.
The vast majority of genetic mutations associated with cancer occur in non-coding regions of the genome, yet it's unclear how they may influence tumor development or growth. Researchers have identified nearly 200 mutations in non-coding DNA that play a role in cancer. Each mutation could represent a new cancer drug target.
Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men and the fifth leading cause of death from cancer in men worldwide, according to 2012 numbers. While several viable treatment options for prostate cancer exist, many men affected with prostate cancer will not respond to first-line treatments. Researchers have now developed a new technology for liquid biopsy to identify which patients may not respond to standard therapy before it is delivered.