New target to enhance anti-cancer drug sensitivity found in translation

Jun 12, 2008

The development of resistance to anticancer chemotherapeutic agents remains a large problem. In some cases, such resistance is associated with altered control of a cellular process known as translation, which is central to the generation of proteins.

New data, generated by Jerry Pelletier and colleagues, at McGill University, Montreal, have identified a drug that can enhance the sensitivity of mouse cancer cells to standard anticancer chemotherapeutic agents.

In the study, small molecules were screened for their ability to inhibit the initiation of translation by modifying the function of a protein known as eIF4A, which has a central role in translation initiation.

A class of natural drugs known as cyclopentabenzofuran flavaglines were found to have the desired effects and one member of this class of compounds was shown to reverse the resistance of cancer cells to anticancer chemotherapeutic agents in a mouse model of lymphoma.

The authors therefore suggest that developing approaches to inhibit translation initiation by targeting eIF4A might provide a way to altering drug resistance in cancers exhibiting altered control of translation initiation.

Source: Journal of Clinical Investigation

Explore further: New cancer vaccine approach directly targets dendritic cells

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

New function of gene in promoting cancer found

Nov 22, 2010

Researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University have discovered that a gene well known for its involvement in tumor cell development, growth and metastasis also protects cancer cells from being destroyed by chemotherapy. ...

Viral mimic induces melanoma cells to digest themselves

Aug 03, 2009

Recent research has uncovered an unexpected vulnerability in deadly melanoma cells that, when exploited, can cause the cancer cells to turn against themselves. The study, published by Cell Press in the August issue of the ...

Recommended for you

Physicians target the genes of lung, colon cancers

6 hours ago

(Medical Xpress)—University of Florida physicians and researchers are collaborating to map the genes of different types of cancer, and then deliver medication to attack cancer at its source.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

E_L_Earnhardt
not rated yet Jun 12, 2008
Abeting interest is focused on KILLING the cell!
Surely CORRECTING THE MALFUNCTION would be a more nobel ambition! This could be done by bleeding off electrons - (energy) Suggest positive electrodes - or reducing temperture!

More news stories

How kids' brain structures grow as memory develops

Our ability to store memories improves during childhood, associated with structural changes in the hippocampus and its connections with prefrontal and parietal cortices. New research from UC Davis is exploring ...

Progress in the fight against quantum dissipation

(Phys.org) —Scientists at Yale have confirmed a 50-year-old, previously untested theoretical prediction in physics and improved the energy storage time of a quantum switch by several orders of magnitude. ...