Posts Tagged: cancer

Family dynamics: molecules from the same family have different effects in cancer prognosis

Family dynamics: molecules from the same family have different effects in cancer prognosis

Scientists observe that one molecule increases liposarcoma tumor cell spread and aggression while another molecule from the same family decreases migration and cell proliferation. Researchers at Hiroshima University have found that different levels of two molecules of the same family—TIMP-1 and TIMP-4—can influence prognosis of liposarcoma. High levels of TIMP-1 lead to a poor prognosis while high TIMP-4 indicates a less severe form of liposarcoma. This study, published in Carcinogenesis 10th May, described the molecules’ mechanism of action through the YAP/TAZ pathway. Further research can lead to new treatments and better methods of diagnosis for liposarcoma. Different types of cancer have different prognoses (medical outcomes) and some are easier to… Read more

Transcription factor helps tumors grow in low oxygen, resist anticancer therapies

Transcription factor helps tumors grow in low oxygen, resist anticancer therapies

  An international team of researchers found how cancer cells respond to DNA damage signaling when in low oxygen, or hypoxia. Through comprehensive gene expression analyses, the team determined how one family of genes controls DNA damage response, as well as how it weakens the effectiveness of anticancer therapies. Our bodies have strict molecular mechanisms that help us respond to hypoxia. These mechanisms are not just limited to helping us adapt to higher altitudes when climbing up a mountain. They also arise in diseases such as anemia, diabetes, or cancers. In the case of a new study led by Keiji Tanimoto’s team at Hiroshima University (HU), hypoxia indicates developments or… Read more

Hideki Ohdan, gastroenterology

Hideki Ohdan, gastroenterology

A Conversation with Distinguished Professor Hideki Ohdan Distinguished Professor Hideki Ohdan identifies himself as a “surgeon scientist.” He grew up in Hiroshima city and completed a Medical Degree in 1988 and a PhD degree in 1997, both from Hiroshima University. Now, he leads an active medical practice and research laboratory at Hiroshima University Hospital. His career has focused on removing biological barriers to match organ donors with patients who need organ transplants. This project is driven by the immediate needs of clinical patients, but involves solving a larger scientific mystery: how does the immune system recognize its own body as native cells to ignore and recognize foreign cells as invaders… Read more

Studying cancer DNA in blood may help personalize treatment in liver cancer

Studying cancer DNA in blood may help personalize treatment in liver cancer

  Fragments of cancer DNA circulating in a patient’s bloodstream could help doctors deliver more personalized treatment for liver cancer, Japanese researchers report. The new research may help address a particular challenge posed by liver cancers, which can be difficult to analyze safely. One serious risk of existing biopsy methods is that doctors who want to obtain a tumor sample for analysis might cause the cancer to spread into the space around organs. “Doctors need non-invasive methods that will allow them to safely study cancer progression and characterize the genomic features of a patient’s tumor,” said Professor Kazuaki Chayama, a principal investigator in this study. “Testing for these circulating DNA… Read more

A genetic polymorphism associated with lung cancer progression

A genetic polymorphism associated with lung cancer progression

Genetic polymorphisms associated with cancer progression lead to variations in gene expression and may serve as prognostic markers for lung cancer. Researchers at the Hiroshima University and Saitama Medical University found that in patients with lung cancer, a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) may regulate gene and protein expression and be associated with poor prognosis. To establish this genetic polymorphism as a useful clinical prognostic marker and to further clarify its molecular mechanism, large-scale clinicopathological studies of lung cancer and/or other types of cancer are required for additional insights. Hypoxia-inducible factor-2 alpha (HIF-2 alpha or EPAS1) is important for cancer progression, and its overexpression is considered a putative biomarker for poor… Read more

A fuse of cardiovascular diseases

A fuse of cardiovascular diseases

  A promising biomarker for the severity of age-related white matter changes (ARWMCs) and endothelial function was evaluated at Hiroshima University, Japan. The relationship between this biomarker, the telomeric 3′-overhang (G-tail) length, and cardiovascular risk in humans is unclear so far. The researchers at Hiroshima University investigated the association between the telomere G-tail length of leukocytes and vascular risk, ARWMCs, and endothelial function. They suggested that the telomere G-tail might be a useful marker of endothelial dysfunction, as well as stroke and dementia. Telomeres are the structures that cap each end of a chromatid, at the extreme end of the chromosomal DNA. Telomeres are composed of double-stranded DNA with terminal… Read more