Opposite effect: Protein widely known to fight tumors also boosts cancer growth

Researchers studying p53, the heralded cancer-fighting ‚guardian of the genome,‘ found that the human protein also plays a role in promoting tumors, in addition to suppressing them. They found that the PUMA protein works inside the cell’s mitochondria to switch energy production processes and stimulate cancer growth.

Quelle: Sciencedaily

What fuels memory?

Mitochondria are essential for local protein synthesis and synaptic plasticity in neurons (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

More insights into healthy aging mechanisms from the roundworm

What mechanisms ensure healthy aging? Researchers from IUF and HHU in Düsseldorf investigate this in the roundworm, an established organism for aging research. A study which was recently published in EMBO Reports provides new insights into the mechanisms of longevity promoted by reduced mitochondrial activity. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Channels for the Supply of Energy

Freiburg scientists elucidate the mechanism for the transport of water-insoluble protein molecules in mitochondria (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

A 150-year-old drug might improve radiation therapy for cancer

A drug first identified 150 years ago and used as a smooth-muscle relaxant might make tumors more sensitive to radiation therapy. Researchers found that the drug papaverine inhibits the respiration of mitochondria, the oxygen-consuming and energy-making components of cells, and sensitizes model tumors to radiation. They found that the drug does not affect the radiation sensitivity of well-oxygenated normal tissues. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Chemotherapy may lead to mitochondrial dysfunction in skeletal muscle

Chemotherapy drugs to treat breast cancer may promote muscle mitochondrial dysfunction, according to new research. Dysfunctional mitochondria, the energy centers of the cells, may contribute to fatigue and weakness that some people with breast cancer experience through the course of disease treatment. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Proof of Concept: Gene therapy for mitochondrial diseases

Mitochondrial disease is now thought to be the second most commonly diagnosed genetic disease worldwide, and, unfortunately, there are still no proven treatment strategies for those diagnosed. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Biology of Ageing in Cologne were involved in collaborations to apply gene-therapy approaches in mice to successfully treat an animal model of mitochondrial disease. This may pave the way for future therapeutic strategies for patients. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Proof of Concept: Gentherapie bei mitochondrialen Erkrankungen

Mitochondriale Erkrankungen zählen heute zu den zweithäufigsten diagnostizierten genetischen Erkrankungen weltweit, und leider gibt es immer noch keine bewährten Behandlungsstrategien. Wissenschaftler des Max-Planck-Instituts für Biologie des Alterns in Köln haben nun in einer Kooperationsarbeit einen Gentherapieansatz an Mäusen angewandt, der zu einer erfolgreichen Behandlung der Mitochondrienerkrankung in diesen Tieren führte. Damit wurde der Weg für zukünftige therapeutische Strategien am Menschen geebnet. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

„Science“-Study: Proteins surf to mitochondria – Novel transport pathway discovered

Proteins are essential constituents of cells and their compartments. Prof. Johannes Herrmann, a researcher at the Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, and his team discovered a novel mechanism by which newly synthesized proteins reach their respective target compartment in the cell. Proteins destined to mitochondria, the cell’s powerhouse, are not directly transported to mitochondria but are directed to the surface of the endoplasmic reticulum, where they “surf” along its surface. As shown in the renowned journal “Science”, this so far unknown mechanism keeps newly synthesized protein transport-competent and might prevent their aggregation. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Potential indicator for the early detection of dementias

Researchers at the University of Basel have discovered a factor that could support the early detection of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s. This cytokine is induced by cellular stress reactions after disturbances of the mitochondria, the “cell’s power plants,“ as neuropathologists write in the journal Cell Reports. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Scientists discover potential therapy for human copper metabolism disorders

Individuals with defects in copper metabolism may soon have more targeted treatment options thanks to a new discovery. A new report that an investigational anticancer-drug, elesclomol, can restore the production of cytochrome oxidase protein complex, a critical copper-dependent enzyme required for mitochondrial energy production. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Proteins with different evolutionary histories now do the same job

University of Tübingen researchers discover convergent evolution in mitochondria in fungi and single-celled parasites (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

ONC201 kills breast cancer cells in vitro by targeting mitochondria

TRAIL, a member of the TNF family of ligands, causes caspase-dependent apoptosis through activation of its receptors, death receptor 4 and DR5. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Targeting telomerase as therapeutic strategy for melanoma

Targeting telomerase was effective at killing NRAS-mutant melanoma cells, and the impact was further enhanced when the strategy was paired with an inhibitor of mitochondrial function, according to new study. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

A multifunctional device regulates mitochondrial genomes

A small enzyme takes on opposing tasks to keep cells in balance. Even under stress conditions. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Our circadian clock sets the rhythm for our cells’ powerhouses

Cellular energy metabolism also follows the rhythm of the circadian clock. A University of Basel study has now shown exactly how this works by revealing the relationship between the circadian rhythm and the mitochondrial network for the first time. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)

Novel mechanism linking changes in mitochondria to cancer cell death

Researchers have discovered that the activation of a specific enzyme may help suppress the spread of tumors. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Key player in cell metabolism identified

Researchers have identified a key role for EXD2 in protein production in the mitochondria, the cellular organelles responsible for the majority of energy generation. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

New warning system discovered in the immune defense

Researchers have discovered a previously unknown warning system that contributes to the body’s immune system. Mitochondria in the white blood cells secrete a web of DNA fibers that raises the alarm. The results may lead to increased knowledge about autoinflammatory diseases and cancer. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Gene fusion shifts cell activity into high gear, causing some cancer

Researchers have discovered that a common fusion of two adjacent genes can cause cancer by kicking mitochondria into overdrive, increasing the amount of fuel available for rampant cell growth. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

MiNT protein a fresh target to attack disease

A potent protein that resides in a cell’s mitochondria is the most recent link to be detailed in a cycle that manages iron and reactive oxygen species. Because the process can be hijacked by cancer and other diseases, the research could lead to new disease-fighting strategies. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

A metallopeptide targets and disrupts mitochondrial function in breast cancer stem cells

Killing malignant mitochondria is one of the most promising approaches in the development of new anticancer drugs. Scientists have now synthesized a copper-containing peptide that is readily taken up by mitochondria in breast cancer stem cells, where it effectively induces apoptosis. The study also highlights the powerful therapeutic potential of the metallopeptides. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Gastric cancer: A new strategy used by Helicobacter pylori to target mitochondria

Scientists have recently identified new strategies used by Helicobacter pylori bacteria to infect cells. By specifically targeting mitochondria these bacteria, despite being extracellular, can optimize infection in the host. These findings pave the way for new strategies to combat H. pylori infection, which is associated with most cases of gastric cancer and several other gastric disorders. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Sulfur respiration in mammals and antioxidant activity

Researchers have gained new insight into the formation of a group of compounds found in almost all organisms, which are reportedly shown to be a powerful antioxidant that protects cells from damage by free radicals. They found that these compounds were also essential in supporting the mitochondrial energy metabolism, which is known as sulfur respiration, and identified it for the first time in humans and other mammals. (Mehr in: Cancer News — ScienceDaily)

Cellular power outage

A common feature of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or Huntington’s disease are deposits of aggregated proteins in the patient’s cells that cause damage to cellular functions. Scientists report that, even in normal cells, aberrant aggregation-prone proteins are continually produced due to partial failure of the respiratory system. Unless they are removed by degradation, aggregates accumulate preferentially in the mitochondria, the cellular power plants, ultimately blocking energy production. In order to get rid of these toxic aggregates, cells have developed an elaborate protein quality control system, which the researchers now describe in the journal Cell. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)