IMAGE: This is Charles Clevenger, M.D., Ph.D. view more
Credit: VCU Massey Cancer Center
VCU Massey Cancer Center researchers have identified a protein involved in milk production that stimulates the growth and spread of breast cancer and could ultimately serve as a target for novel therapies to treat breast cancer.
Charles Clevenger, M.D., Ph.D., and a team of researchers discovered that the enzyme cyclophilin A (CypA) regulates the Jak2/Stat5 genetic pathway. This pathway is responsible for the natural maturation of mammary glands as well as the development of breast cancer cells.
“This research identifies cyclophilin A as a relevant target for therapeutic intervention in breast cancer. Because FDA-approved drugs are available to inhibit the action of CypA, translation of these findings to breast cancer patients should be rapid,” said Clevenger, interim associate director for basic research, member of the Cancer Cell Signaling research program and Carolyn Wingate Endowed Chair in Cancer Research at VCU Massey Cancer Center. “No study to date had previously examined the loss of CypA function during mammary development and the formation of cancer.”
By deleting the CypA enzyme in mouse models with ER-positive and ER-negative breast cancer, Clevenger and his team were able to inhibit
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