News: Drug Discovery

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Cancer signaling pathway blocker

Friday, April 10th, 2015

Researchers at Vanderbilt University have discovered a new way to inhibit Hedgehog (Hh) signaling, an important regulatory pathway for vertebrate development – and cancer. Abnormal regulation of this pathway leads to several human malignancies, including small cell lung cancer and pancreatic cancer, and therefore it is a potential drug target for cancer. Small molecules have […]

Micelle “packets” deliver cancer drugs

Friday, April 10th, 2015

Small interfering RNA (siRNA) molecules can suppress tumor growth and target cells otherwise untreatable by conventional therapeutics, but targeted, intracellular delivery is a significant limitation to siRNA translation. To deliver the siRNA molecules into tumor cells, researchers have packaged them in micelles that express folic acid, which is internalized by cancer cells that overexpress folate […]

‘Docking stations’ on chromosomes new anti-cancer target

Thursday, March 26th, 2015

Vanderbilt University researchers have discovered a cleft in a chromosome-binding protein that may hold the key to stopping most cancers in their tracks. The protein, WDR5, is a “docking station” for a family of transcription factors called MYC that is overexpressed in the majority of malignancies and which contributes to an estimated 100,000 cancer-related deaths […]

Moses, Shyr named to IOM cancer therapies panel

Monday, March 9th, 2015

Two Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) leaders have been named to a panel of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to help shape national policies on the use of biomarkers for targeted cancer therapies. Harold L. (Hal) Moses, M.D., Ingram Professor of Cancer Research and director emeritus of VICC, will chair the IOM’s ad hoc committee, Policy […]

Grant bolsters pancreatic cancer drug discovery

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

The Lustgarten Foundation has awarded a $1.5 million Research Investigator Grant to Stephen Fesik, Ph.D., professor of Biochemistry, Pharmacology and Chemistry, for research designed to discover new drugs for the treatment of pancreatic cancer. This is Fesik’s second three-year award from the Lustgarten Foundation in support of his research targeting K-Ras, a protein mutated in […]

Combo therapy may help fight melanoma

Thursday, January 8th, 2015

Two therapies already in clinical development as single agents may work in combination to treat many subtypes of melanoma, a recent study suggests.

Protein “pockets” help ID cancer genes

Tuesday, November 11th, 2014

Somatic mutations, which can occur in any cell except sperm or egg, are not inheritable. Several recent studies have demonstrated that disease-causing mutations commonly alter protein folding, protein stability and protein-protein interactions. It has been difficult, however, to determine which somatic mutations identified in tumor samples “drive” the cancer development and which are just “along […]

Study Finds New Role for Cell Factor

Friday, October 31st, 2014

Vanderbilt University investigators have discovered a new molecular mechanism that regulates the dynamics of microtubules, which form the cell’s internal skeleton. The unexpected finding, reported in Developmental Cell, has implications for cancer drug discovery,

VICC Investigators Earn Breast Cancer Grants

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

Three Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) investigators have been awarded breast cancer research grants totaling $830,000 from the Susan G. Komen organization.

Study Creates New Road Map for Cell Activity

Thursday, September 4th, 2014

Human cells are constructed in large part from proteins whose activity can be altered by the incorporation of oxygen in what are known as redox modifications. Detecting these redox modifications as they occur in proteins is delicate work, “like trying to catch a fairy in a jar,” said Daniel Liebler, Ph.D., Ingram Professor of Cancer […]