Research uncovers a potential new strategy to fight ovarian cancer

IMAGE: Dr. Achuth Padmanabhan. view more 

Credit: Baylor College of Medicine

A new discovery opens the possibility of developing a novel way to fight ovarian cancer. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center have revealed a previously unknown cellular pathway that selectively regulates a mutant protein, called p53-R175H, linked to ovarian cancer growth. The researchers identified a key regulator of this pathway – USP15 – and suggest that designing drugs directed at this regulator might lead to better ways to control cancer growth in the future. The study appears in Nature Communications.

“Ovarian cancer is currently treated with surgery and chemotherapy. Chemotherapy for ovarian cancer is based on drugs that act on any cell that is rapidly dividing, healthy or malignant, which has side effects,” said first and corresponding author Dr. Achuth Padmanabhan, instructor of molecular and cell biology at Baylor College of Medicine. “If we are able to develop treatments that target only cancer cells, then we might be able to minimize side effects.”

Research has revealed that mutant p53 proteins might be the target scientists have been looking for. More than 96 percent of high-grade serous ovarian carcinomas, the


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