Comment »Posted on Saturday 22 August 2009 at 7:05 pm by Emma Stokes
In Biology, Health & Medicine

This week’s updates from UAR headquarters:

New target for stopping colon cancer

A team of scientists studying mice have found a target that could lead to an effective way to kill colon cancer cells.

Past treatments for many types of cancer target the epidermal growth factor (EGFR). This belongs to a group of proteins that signal cells to reproduce; if the cells can no-longer reproduce, then the cancer cannot spread.

However, the drugs designed to target the receptor have shown very little effect against colon cancer,so the search is on for new targets. The new study identified the ERBB3 receptor (a close relation to EGFR) as a candidate.

To read the rest of this story please see the Understanding Animal Research site.

‘Magnetic’ stem cells target damaged blood vessels

Scientists have harnessed the power of magnetism to guide stem cells towards damaged tissue in rats. The team coated stem cells with iron nanoparticles.

This allowed them to be moved by an external magnet around the body, to the site of injury. It also allowed their path to be tracked using MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scanners.

They used endothelial progenitor stem cells, which circulate in the blood and are involved in the healing of blood vessels. They become endothelial cells, the cells that line the blood vessels.

To read the rest of this story please see the Understanding Animal Research site.


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