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Researchers Find Mechanism to Refine Cancer Therapies

Researchers Find Mechanism to Refine Cancer Therapies

May 28, 2021 - Summarized from The Jerusalem Post

Medical Research, Research News

The Jerusalem Post – Researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev (BGU) have discovered a novel mechanism, which is a promising target for cancer therapeutics to optimize cancer treatment, according to a new study published in the peer-reviewed journal Science Advances on Wednesday.

Cancer Research

BGU researchers seek to identify new proteins, in order to define the molecular mechanisms that can lead to new cancer therapies.

The researchers focused on studying processes in the cell which regulate cancer initiation and progression, specifically gene expression, a multistep process in which genes are transcripted, spliced, translated and eventually lead to a phenotype, an observable trait.

Prof. Dan Levy

Prof. Dan Levy, the National Institute for Biotechnology in the Negev.

The study found that BRD4, which has a fundamental role in regulation gene expression, inhibits the expression of genes which are involved in translation, in which messenger RNA (MRNA) is translated to a protein, and can abolish protein synthesis, the process through which cells make proteins.

“Our understanding of human cancer progression and treatment largely depends on our ability to scientifically explore and deeply decipher the different cellular events which control these processes,” said Prof. Dan Levy, a scientist at BGU and the National Institute for Biotechnology in the Negev.

The researchers have only studied the mechanism in breast cancer models so far, but are currently expanding it to other cancer types as well, such as melanoma and glioblastoma, according to Levy. The lab headed by Levy is also studying additional protein methylation pathways, such as cell cycles and programmed cell death.


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