Pancreatic cancer is considered one of the deadliest and most violent types of cancer.
Research led by scientists from Israel’s Hebrew University of Jerusalem may herald significant progress in the study and treatment of pancreatic cancer – one of the deadliest and most violent types of cancer.
In a study published on Wednesday in the Nature journal, Israeli scientists revealed through experimentation on mice that it is possible to eliminate the metastatic capacity of pancreatic cancer cells taken from patients so that they cannot form metastases.
The researchers compared about 400 non-metastatic stage pancreatic cancer tumors to metastatic cells and found that it was change in the processing of RNA molecules, rather than genetic changes in DNA, that causes tumors to become metastatic.
Led by Ph.D. student Amina Jabara and Professor Rotem Karni, an expert in the molecular biology of cancer, the study showed that by using a drug that inhibits the activity of a certain group of genes – and which is currently used to treat patients who have had organ transplants – it is possible to delay the formation of metastases pancreatic cancer.
Through genetic intervention in processing the RNA (polymeric molecule) of target genes, the researchers also revealed that it’s possible to inhibit the metastatic capacity of pancreatic cancer cells taken from patients so that they cannot metastasize when transplanted into mice.
Pancreatic cancer is considered among the deadliest of all cancer types, and only a few percent of patients survive the disease. Currently, there is no effective treatment for the cancer, which is generally discovered at its metastatic stage.