New Vulnerability Found in Blood Cancer Development

News ID: 1019094 Service: Science
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TEHRAN (Tasnim) - A protein that is key to the development of blood cancers caused by a common genetic error has been identified by researchers. The discovery is a missing piece in the puzzle of understanding how high levels of a protein called MYC drive cancer development.

Walter and Eliza Hall Institute researchers have uncovered a protein that is key to the development of blood cancers caused by a common genetic error.

The discovery will help find future strategies for early treatment or possibly even prevention of these cancers.

Seventy percent of human cancers have abnormally high levels of MYC, which forces cells into unusually rapid growth.

Dr. Stephanie Grabow, Dr. Brandon Aubrey, Professor Andreas Strasser and colleagues at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute discovered that blood cancers driven by MYC could be prevented by lowering the levels of another protein, called MCL-1. The research was published in the journal Cell Reports.

Dr. Aubrey, who is also a clinical haematologist at The Royal Melbourne Hospital, said the research could inform future strategies to prevent cancer.

"Early treatment or even cancer prevention are likely to be a more effective way to fight cancer than treating an established cancer after it has already formed and made a person sick," he said.

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