Scientists at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Children's Hospital in Boston have identified a protein that plays a critical role in the growth of melanoma.
The researchers found that malignant melanoma cannot grow without a steady supply of the protein CDKZ-a protein not needed by normal cells.
Using laboratory-grown melanoma cells, the scientists found that adding a chemical that sup pressed the activity of the CDK2 gene, which produces CDK2 protein, significantly slowed the growth and spread of melanoma cells.
The findings suggest that it may be possible to develop drugs that cut off the supply of CDK2 to melanoma cells. This may be an effective way to halt the growth of melanoma without causing damage to other cells.
Study authors note that CDK2-inhibiting drugs already exist, and they hope their study results will lead to clinical trials of these drugs in people who have melanoma.
Want to Keep Reading?
Continue reading with a Health Confidential membership.