Tag Archives: molecular medicine

Colorectal Cancer Molecules and Genes Reveal Surprises

A Labor Day salute to the hard-working scientists—doctors, PhDs, lab techs, technology inventors—who have done some  heavy lifting to peer into the tiniest recesses of cells, genes, and molecules to unravel what makes colorectal cancer happen. In the widest and deepest effort to date, the Cancer Genome Atlas Project has produced some surprises and key clues about colorectal cancer, published recently in the journal Nature. It was almost “ industrial-strength genetics to try to unpick and take apart the genetic coding,” according to Dr. David Kerr, professor at the University of Oxford and Past President of the European Society for Medical Oncology.  One of the surprises for colorectal cancer—the third

High Levels of Gene MACC1 Predicts Colorectal Cancer Spread

German scientists have identified a gene that has higher levels in colon cancer patients whose tumors are destined to spread. By initiating a signaling pathway in the cancer cell, MACC1 (Metastasis-Associated in Colon Cancer 1) promotes faster cell growth and cancer spread  to distant sites in the body (metastasis) . Their research was published online in Nature Medicine. About a third of patients whose cancer is found in early stages will eventually have it spread to other organs.  Measuring MACC1 may help doctors identify those patients, treat them more aggressively, and follow them  more closely.

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