Researchers have identified a master protein that regulates some 1,000 genes controlling for tumor growth and metastasis in breast cancer, according to a linkurl:paper; published today in Nature. The researchers, led by linkurl:Terumi Kohwi-Shigematsu; at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, stumbled upon SATB1's heightened expression while screening aggressive human breast cancer tumor samples. Surprisingly, they found that SATB1 is only expressed in aggressive tumors. "SATB1 is a gene organizer, a regulator of a large body of genes," Kohwi-Shigematsu told The Scientist. "Almost 1,000 genes changed expression with SATB1 expressed." The SATB1 protein linkurl:regulates chromatin structure; and tissue architecture -- properties essential for tumor cells to transition into metastatic states. In addition , SATB1 regulates genes that come from all different sorts of molecular pathways, from signaling genes to growth factors. But they are all "in favor" of linkurl:metastasis; and downregulate tumor suppressor genes. "One could argue that SATB1 is...
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