About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Removal of Damaged Mitochondria may Help Treat Liver Cancer

by Anjali Aryamvally on October 13, 2017 at 11:16 AM
Font : A-A+

Removal of Damaged Mitochondria may Help Treat Liver Cancer

The mechanism of how cancer stem cells survive has been identified by a research team at Keck School of Medicine. This finding may one day lead to new therapies for a type of cancer with the highest incidence rates in the United States--Liver cancer.

"Liver cancer is difficult to treat, and most patients who are diagnosed with it will die within a five-year period," said Jing-Hsiung James Ou, senior author of a new study and a professor of molecular microbiology and immunology at the Keck School of Medicine. "My team has identified how liver cancer stem cells are maintained. Without these 'seeds of cancer,' liver tumors would shrink and eventually disappear."

Advertisement


New liver cancer cases went up 38 percent from 2003 to 2012, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The disease's death rate increased by 56 percent to 23,000 deaths between 2012 and 2003.

The study, published in the journal Molecular Cell , is an example of how Keck School of Medicine researchers are finding biomedical solutions that in the distant future could improve medical treatment for patients. Ou believes the target therapy his team identified could also be used for other types of cancers.
Advertisement

A way to sidestep disease resistance

Liver cancer is resistant to most chemotherapy drugs. Only three drugs have been effective in shrinking liver tumors, but tumors become resistant to the treatment quickly, according to the American Cancer Society.

Ou and his colleagues found that mitophagy, the removal of damaged mitochondria (the cell's energizer batteries), is a potential therapeutic target. Mitophagy can cause tumors to proliferate. That is because a powerful tumor suppressor called p53 attaches itself to mitochondria. Removing mitochondria inadvertently removes the body's natural ability to keep tumors at bay.

If a lot of damaged "batteries" are removed, then the tumor suppressor p53 will also be removed: More cancer stem cells will be created, resulting in more malignant tumors. However, if this cell cleaning process is temporarily halted, then the number of cancer stem cells will diminish. Without these seeds of cancer, tumors will regress until they no longer exist, Ou said.

"Now that we understand the molecular process, we will be able to target this pathway to stop the production of cancer stem cells," Ou said. "If cancer stem cells are gone, cancer is gone."



Source: Eurekalert
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Is COVID-19 Vaccination during Pregnancy Safe?
Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD)
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Alcoholic Liver Disease Hepatitis A Hepatitis B Liver Cancer Cancer and Homeopathy Neonatal Jaundice Bubbles and Brews - Alcohol Facts Cancer Facts Cancer Tattoos A Body Art 

Recommended Reading
Vitamin C May Encourage Blood Cancer Stem Cells To Die
Vitamin C activates demethylation of TET2 enzyme, which signals stem cells to mature and die....
Plant Extract Inhibits Growth of Cancer Stem Cells
The natural and the synthetic extract of Ambrosia arborescens inhibit the growth and spread of ......
'Labyrinth' Chip Helps Track Aggressive Cancer Stem Cells
Labyrinth' chip could help monitor aggressive cancer stem cells. A hydrodynamic maze to separate ......
RNA Molecule Identified to Shield Breast Cancer Stem Cells
A small RNA molecule has been recently identified to shield breast cancer stem cells....
Alcoholic Liver Disease
Encyclopedia section of medindia gives general information about Alcoholic Liver Disease....
Bubbles and Brews - Alcohol Facts
There is more to alcohol than mere intoxication. Infamous because of its social abuse but indispensa...
Hepatitis A
Hepatitis A is the most benign of the hepatitis viruses and usually has no long term side effects. H...
Hepatitis B
Hepatitis B is inflammation of the liver due to infection with the hepatitis B virus....
Liver Cancer
Liver or hepatic cancer is an abnormal growth of cells in the liver. The leading cause of the diseas...
Neonatal Jaundice
Yellow colouring of skin in newborns, a condition called Neonatal jaundice. , Neonatal jaundice is c...
Tattoos A Body Art
Tattoos are a rage among college students who sport it for the ‘cool dude’ or ‘cool babe’ look...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use