At Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (Sanford-Burnham), scientists have identified how an enzyme called PKCζ suppresses prostate tumor formation.
The finding, which also describes a molecular chain of events that controls cell growth and metastasis, could lead to novel ways to control disease progression.
Working in close collaboration, the labs of Maria T. Diaz-Meco, Ph.D., and Jorge Moscat, Ph.D., found that PKCζ controls the activation of a pro-tumor gene called c-Myc. Normally, PKCζ's alteration keeps c-Myc in check. But PKCζ levels are low in prostate and other cancers, leaving c-Myc free to enhance cell growth and metastasis. This study, published April 1 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
, suggests that restoring PKCζ could provide a new approach to treating prostate cancer.