Scientists in Spain find new means of slowing lung cancer metastasis

Source: Xinhua| 2017-09-06 00:47:55|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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MADRID, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- Scientists working at the Center for Investigation for Applied Medicine (CIMA) at the University of Navarra report that they have discovered a new way to slow lung cancer metastasis.

In a communique published by the organization, the researchers, who were directed by Dr. Ana Rouzaut, claim their investigations "offer an opportunity to use pre-existing drugs to block the spread of cancer cells."

The CIMA researchers were working with the Center for Biomedical Investigation at the University of la Rioja (CIBIR) and in a study published in the scientific journal "Pios One" they show how by blocking a protein (beta-3 integrin) the development of structures associated with metastasis is stopped.

"This protein is necessary for invasion by cancer cells. Our work has shown that by blocking it we impede the formation of one of the cell structures, called invadopodia, associated with metastasis in the lungs," explained Dr. Rouzaut.

She said the researchers used genetic engineering to obtain lung cancer cells without the beta-3 integrin and that the new cells were "absolutely incapable" of developing invasive mechanisms.

The researchers explain that this discovery allows the chance for "companies which have already developed anti-cancer drugs to use them as therapies for lung metastases by directing them at the molecular 'targets' which were identified" in their work.