The study focused on a cluster of proteins called the minichromosomal maintenance (MCM) complex, known to be a crucial factor in cell division
To sort out the role of such random mutations in cancer risk, the Johns Hopkins scientists charted the number of stem cell divisions
in 31 tissues and compared these rates with the lifetime risks of cancer in the same tissues among Americans.
Loss of the ability to orient cell division
results in severe developmental defects in the embryo and is responsible for a number of diseases in adults including neurological disorders like Huntington's as well as others like polycystic kidney disease.
Robust phase locking between the mammalian clock and the cell cycle is of primary relevance to cancer because the clock is often disrupted or turned off in cancer cells allowing faster cell division
and disorganisation of the crucial anti-cancer cellular processes whose timing is regulated by the circadian clock inside each cell.
Identifying the specific problem caused by cholesterol will lead to completely new approaches to therapy for many human diseases, including Alzheimer's disease, atherosclerosis and possibly cancer, all of which show signs of defective cell division
Normal cell division
, known as mitosis, results in the separation of replicated chromosomes and the formation of two daughter nuclei with identical sets of chromosomes and genes.
In our search for proteins that are responsible for that sensitivity, we found that SIK2 was required for cell division
and that its inhibition offers a novel approach to improving chemotherapy for ovarian cancer that deserves further study," he added.
Lead researcher Professor Andrew Sharrocks, of Manchester University, said: "Enzymes are proteins that speed up or 'catalyse' the body's chemical reactions such as those required for normal cell division
The target of the drug is Plk-1 (polo-like kinase1), a protein that acts as a catalyst in cell division
Professor Premkumar Reddy, from Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, USA, who led the research, said: 'Because all signalling pathways that have gone awry in a cancer cell ultimately affect cell proliferation, a reasonable approach to cancer therapy is to develop inhibitors that block the function of a critical molecule required by a tumour cell to complete cell division
Ithaca, NY) has patented a method for isolating and identifying a nucleic acid molecule which regulates fruit size and/or cell division
in plants and the protein encoded by such a nucleic acid molecule.
The authors of this study found a way - by inserting a gene called hTERT - to shut off a portion of one of the enzymes involved in the process of cell division