publicado em 15/09/2012 às 15h45:00
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USP study identifies protein that inhibits tumor growth

Results of tests in medical school have shown promise in combating tumor cells in mice

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Fragment of myosin is a "promising molecular tool" to combat tumors, according to a researcher at USP.

Research of the Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto (FMRP) USP identified a protein fragment that can be an important weapon against cancer. The work of biomedical Anthony Charles Borges shows that a piece of myosin Va protein responsible for transporting motor some organelles, when expressed individually, inhibits the growth of tumors.

For testing, were produced tumor cells capable of expressing the fragment, and then, used to induce tumors in mice. The results of the animal study was satisfactory. After 28 days, while nearly 90% of the mice in the group whose tumors possessed a fragment of myosin remained alive, just over 60% of the mice had tumors that normal group had survived.

Trying to make an analogy, myosin would be like a freight train with their wagons, moving on rails. In these wagons could be carried various cargoes such as molecules, organelles and vesicles, including hazardous materials, such as pro-apoptotic factors. If these pro-apoptotic factors fall wagons, were capable of inducing the death of the cell itself, the researcher explains.

What we did in our work force was the tumor cell to produce a wagon dangerous cargo, ie a fragment of myosin Va, disengaged from the train. Therefore, the hazardous materials are free in the cell to cause death thereof.

<b> Results </ b>

The measurement of tumor volume also points more encouraging results. We found that tumors expressing our peptide grew significantly less than tumors that do not express, says the biomedical.

Borges points out that the result is somewhat surprising since the results in vivo with animals overcame the effects observed in vitro, made in test tubes, only cells, which does not always happen.

The practical application of the principle, assessed by the investigator as a promising tool, however, is still far from being achieved. He says that other researchers of the Laboratory of Cellular and Molecular Biology of Cancer FMRP continue working in this direction, but the use of the fragment in cancer treatment should only be achieved in the long term.

<i> With the information USP </ i>

   Palavras-chave:   Protein    Tumors    Cancer cells    Faculty of Medicine of Ribeirão Preto    FMRP    USP    Universidade de São Paulo   
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