Canadian team discovers gene that turns cancers off
August 13, 2007 at 6:49 PM EDT
A unique gene that can stop cancerous cells from multiplying into tumours has been discovered by a team of scientists at the B.C. Cancer Agency in Vancouver.
The team, led by Dr. Poul Sorensen, says the gene has the power to suppress the growth of human tumours in multiple cancers, including breast, lung and liver.
The gene, HACE 1, helps cells fight off stress that, left unchecked, opens the door to formation of multiple tumours.
Dr. Sorensen's team found cancerous cells form tumours when HACE 1 is inactive, but when additional stress such as radiation is added, tumour growth is rampant.
Kick-starting HACE 1 prevented those cells from forming tumours.
The study appears in the advance online publication of Nature Medicine.