Scientists identify cancer preventive molecule

November 17th, 2008 - 5:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Nov 17 (Prensa Latina) Scientists have linked aggressive cancer to the absence of a molecule and said the lack of the molecule could be a bio-indicator of developing cancer, Science Magazine reported in its latest issue.Scientists at the University of Michigan found that the absence of a molecule called microRNA-101 increases the levels of the a protein known as EZH2, which has been linked to aggressive forms of prostrate, skin, breast and bladder cancer.

Until now, scientists did not know what triggered production of that protein, which was found in excess in mice suffering from cancer.

When the microRNA-101 or miR-101 molecule was injected, the levels of the EZH2 protein dropped and the tumour’s growth slowed down.

According to the scientists, in some kinds of tumour, the level of miR-101 drops to zero, so the concentration of the EZH2 protein increases and the tumour grows rapidly.

“(That portion of RNA) could be used as a bio-indicator. Lack of miR-101 might predict the presence of metastasis (the process by which cancer spreads),” according to research team chief Arul Chinnaiyan.

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