Kris Carlson

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Cancer control through apoptosis control

A problem for efficacious gene therapy has been identifying the control region for the gene to be transferred along with the gene. Here they not only identified a control region, bax, of the target gene, survivin, but mutated it to increase downregulation of the target, which is only expressed in developmental cells and consequently is ideal for cancer treatment. Survivin is an apoptosis inhibitor, so downregulating it allows the cancer cell-killing pathways to become active.

“The survivin protein is expressed highly in most human tumours and fetal tissue, but is completely absent in terminally differentiated cells.[3] This fact therefore makes survivin an ideal target for cancer therapy as cancer cells are targeted while normal cells are left alone.” (Wikipedia citing Sah NK, Khan Z, Khan GJ, Bisen PS (December 2006). “Structural, functional and therapeutic biology of survivin”. Cancer Lett. 244 (2): 164–71.doi:10.1016/j.canlet.2006.03.007PMID 16621243)

IF bax works similarly in humans, this will be tried for suppression of brain tumors. Likewise, we could look for bax downregulation as a cause of cancer in aging humans.

November 3, 2010 Posted by | Biogerontology | , , , , , | Leave a comment


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