UNC-developed kinase test may yield gains for drug-resistant cancers
In a paper published in the journal Cell, a team from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill unveils the first broad-based test for activation of protein kinases “en masse,” enabling measurement of the mechanism behind drug-resistant cancer and rational prediction of successful combination therapies. Kinases are proteins expressed in human tissues that play a key role in cell growth, particularly in cancer. Of the 518 known human kinases, about 400 are expressed in cancers, but which ones and how many are actually active in tumors has been difficult to measure.
Among the research institutions NCI funds across the United States, it currently designates 66 as Cancer Centers. Largely based in research universities, these facilities are home to many of the NCI-supported scientists who conduct a wide range of intense, laboratory research into cancer’s origins and development. The Cancer Centers Program also focuses on trans-disciplinary research, including population science and clinical research. The centers’ research results are often at the forefront of studies in the cancer field.