Cancer Research Topics

Researchers discussed new approaches and promising drug targets at the American Association for Cancer Research meeting in San Francisco last month, including protein delivery and metastasis.

Protein Delivery: Steven Dowdy, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at Washington University, reported on a way to get large proteins into cells in vivo. Typically only small molecules can cross the lipid membrane surrounding the cell. Dowdy and his colleagues circumvent the problem by using the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) TAT protein, which can cross cell membranes. Large proteins gain the ability to enter a cell when fused to an 11-amino acid TAT segment, the protein transduction domain (PTD). Dowdy's lab is mimicking human tumor mutations in normal mouse tissues to study how the cell cycle is disrupted in cancer. For instance, they can inject a fusion protein that inactivates a signal transduction pathway; as long as the mouse receives...

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