MD Anderson-led study finds metabolic protein wields phosphate group to activate cancer-promoting genes
A metabolic protein that nourishes cancer cells also activates tumor-promoting genes by loosening part of the packaging that entwines DNA to make up chromosomes, a team led by scientists at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center reports in the Aug. 16 issue of Cell. Working in cell lines and mouse models of glioblastoma multiforme, the most lethal form of brain tumor, the team showed that pyruvate kinase M2 (PKM2) fuels tumor growth by influencing a histone protein.
Among the research institutions NCI funds across the United States, it currently designates 67 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.