Major Kaposi's sarcoma discovery announced

April 6, 2006

Government scientists say they've found a human cell surface molecule involved with the Kaposi's sarcoma herpes virus.

The researchers at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease say the molecule xCT is a major gateway the herpes virus uses to enter human cells and might also play a role in the development of Kaposi's sarcoma and other syndromes associated with the virus.

The natural function of xCT is to transport molecules necessary for protecting against stress into cells. When cells are stressed, they express more xCT. Such stress can be caused by KSHV itself and that, scientists say, suggests the virus may cause itself to be more effective.

"Understanding the mechanisms of cell entry of Kaposi's sarcoma herpes virus is a landmark achievement in and of itself," said NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci. "But the connection between the virus and expression of its own receptor on a cell is even more provocative because it might change the way we think about (Kaposi's sarcoma herpes virus-associated) diseases and their treatment."

The research appears in the journal Science.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: In sub-Saharan Africa, cancer can be an infectious disease

Related Stories

In sub-Saharan Africa, cancer can be an infectious disease

August 26, 2016

In 1963, Irish surgeon Denis Parson Burkitt airmailed samples of an unusual jaw tumor found in Ugandan children to his colleague, Anthony Epstein, at Middlesex Hospital in London. Epstein, an expert in chicken viruses and ...

Countdown to a cure—the effort to finally defeat AIDS

July 28, 2016

The sun, barely penetrating the summer fog, dully illuminated the hallways of San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH) on July 1, 1981, as Paul Volberding, MD, started his first day of rounds and met his first patient as a ...

Researchers identify new drug target for Kaposi's sarcoma

July 30, 2009

UCSF researchers have identified a new potential drug target for the herpes virus that causes Kaposi's sarcoma, re-opening the possibility of using the class of drugs called protease inhibitors against the full herpes family ...

Longevity of AIDS patients presents new risks: US

June 2, 2011

Thirty years after the AIDS epidemic first surfaced, more people than ever before in the United States -- more than 1.1 million -- are living with HIV, the Centers for Disease Control said Thursday.

Recommended for you

Rosetta captures comet outburst

August 25, 2016

In unprecedented observations made earlier this year, Rosetta unexpectedly captured a dramatic comet outburst that may have been triggered by a landslide.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.