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NCI Cancer Center News

University of Chicago study points to new target for cancers resistant to Iressa and Herceptin

  • Posted: September 5, 2012

A more-sensitive method to analyze protein interactions has uncovered a new way that cancer cells may use the cell-surface molecule HER3 to drive tumor progression following treatment with HER1 and HER2 inhibitors. The finding, published Sept. 4 in the journal PLOS ONE, came from one of the largest-ever quantitative analyses of binary-protein interactions to date. Researchers from the University of Chicago (which is home to the University of Chicago Comprehensive Cancer Center) identified more than 1,000 new interactions for the four members of the HER family of growth-factor receptors, with the largest number of new additions linked to HER3.

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NCI comprehensive cancer centers logoAmong 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.