Protein Compels Cancer Cells to Death

A protein that inhibits ovarian cancer growth does so by partly forcing the cancerous cells to self-destruct, according to the latest research.

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The Texas Univeristy (TU) team that carried out the study also found that expression of PEA-15, a protein, is an independent indicator of a woman’s prospects for surviving ovarian cancer, said study co-author Naoto T Ueno, associate professor of breast medical oncology.

An analysis of ovarian tumours in 395 women showed those with high expression of the PEA-15 survived for 50.2 months, compared to 33.5 months for women with low protein levels.

Ovarian cancer kills about 15,000 women in US alone every year. It is notoriously hard to diagnose in its early stages, when it is also most optimal time to treat, according to a TU release.

“These findings provide a foundation for developing a PEA-15 targeted approach for ovarian cancer and for clarifying whether this protein is a novel biomarker that can predict patient outcomes,” Ueno said.

Sources:The report appeared in Saturday’s issue of Cancer Research.

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