Myosin VI, a molecular motor which acts as a courier to transport other proteins within our cells is present in many cancers yet the role is unclear.
Dr Chris Toseland of the University's School of Biosciences studied the role of Myosin VI found it was critical in the production of specific genes which are linked to cell growth and tumor development. This is particularly relevant to breast, ovarian, prostate and colon cancer.
Approximately 70% of all breast cancer is estrogen sensitive and the results of this study may identify new treatment targets for patients with the disease. As a result of his findings, Dr Toseland is now inviting patients in the NHS to take part in further research.
Understanding the role of Myosin VI in the disease may also highlight further diagnostic clues for the disease. This would potentially allow for a better choice of treatment to be administered.