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CassilynPeetz ResearchPaper 10/16/13 Molecularbiology,onabasiclevel,islookingatlifeinitsmostsimpleform: molecules,oragroupofatoms.Inmolecularbiology,wecanstudythewayDNA (DeoxyribonucleicAcid)andRNAwork,genetics,andproteinsthatarethebuildingblocks forlife.Becauseoftherecentadvancementsoftechnologyandthelackofsizeofwhats beingstudied,onlyrecentlyhavewebeenabletomakeprogressinmolecularbiology.This broadsubjectbranchesoutintomanydifferentsubtopics,suchasthestudyofRNA translation,genetics,andthebuildingofproteins.Molecularbiologyisaformof biochemistry,oramixofbiologyandchemistryasproteins,DNA,andmoleculesaremade upofchemicals.Molecularbiologistsquestionthewaygeneticshappenandcanlearnas tohowwecanpossiblychangethewayDNAworks.Usingsyntheticgeneswecan experimentwithourgeneticsandDNA,leadingustobreakthroughsinmedicine.

Wecan findcures,findwhatcausesdiseases,andpossibly,evenprotectourselvesfromcertain geneticmutations,suchasthesusceptibilitytocancer. Whencanceroccurs,cellscannotfunctionproperly.Theycannotfixanydamagethe wayitssupposedtobefixed.Instead,theydivideconstantly,causingtumorstobegrown. However,atumormaynotbecancer.Tumorscanbebenign,wheretheycaneasilybe takenoutbysurgery.Thecellsofatumorwillnotspread,andtheproblemwillbetaken careof.Foratumortobecancerous,ormalignant,ithastospread.Cancerissimply uncontrollablecellgrowthandimmortalityofthecell.Recentstudieshaveshownthat cancerspreadsbecauseofaproblemwiththestickinessofthecells.Theydetachfromthe

originalsiteandreattachsomewhereelse.Asthecellsmoveandinfectothers,and growthsoccur,thebodystartstoshutdown.Normalfunctionsarenolongerpossiblewhen growthsareblockingoffvitalconnectionsandultimatelykillsthevictim.Inamolecularlevel, cancerthrivesoffofmutationsinthegenome.WhenadamageoccurstotheDNA,usually therearerepairers.However,cancerattacksthoserepairingmechanisms,whichinturn makesmoremutations.Eventuallyenoughmutationsoccurthatinducestumorprogression. Inmetastasis,conversethroughatransferofmolecules.Usingtheirconversation,the cellscanfindwheretomove. Thankfully,though,cancerresearchhasbeenatanalltimehigh.TheInstituteof CancerResearchhasbeenworkingonpossibledrugtherapies.Workandresearchhas beenmadeonthemoleculesthatcontrolcelladhesion,andaspreviouslystated,theynow knowthatamutationoccurs,lettingcancerouscellstravelfromonepartofthebodyto another.AnotherlabfromtheUniversityofTexasworkedoncelltransformationand metastasis.Theyfoundthatacertainmoleculedirectlyaffectstherewiringprocessof anothermolecule,oneresponsibleinmetastasis,orthespreadofcancer.Theyfoundthat enhancingandslowingthefirstmoleculecansloworenhancemetastasis. Asforresearchonacureforcancer,agroupofresearchersfrombothUSCand NYUhavecreatedasyntheticmoleculecalledHSB1thatinterruptstheinteractionbetween thegenesresponsibleforcancergrowthandtumorprogression.Withthisnewmoleculein hand,wecanhopefullyadvancecancertreatmentdrugprocess. Similarly,amoleculecalledTIC10wasfoundthatcouldcausecancerous cellstodie,butnothealthycells.Itactivatesaproteinresponsibleforkillingtumorsand

tumorgrowth.Becauseitspartoftheimmunesystem,itwillbelessdifficultonthebody, therebypossiblyremovingtheneedofchemotherapy,astrenuousandnotalways successfulcuretocancer.Evenbetteristhatthissupposedmoleculeisveryeffective againstapreviouslyresistanttypeofcancercalledglioblastoma.Researchisstillbeing donethough,aspaststudiesofthismoleculeturnedouttonotbeassuccessfulas expected.Successwasfoundinmice,butnotverymuchinhumansduetolackoftesting. However,theteamatPennsylvaniaStateUniversitybelievethereisstillmuchpotentialfor acure. ResearchersattheGermanCancerResearchCenterhavealsobeen experimentingwithmolecularpathwaysofbreastcancercells.Theytargetedthepathways thatpromotedgrowthofthecancercells.Researchisstillbeingconductedifthissortof curewouldworkornot,particularlyinhumans,howeveritssafetoassumethatwerevery closetocomingupwithsomethingthatcanstopthespreadofcancer,andperhapseven killthecancercells.

Contacts: UCSDBiologicalSciencesEmmaChan,(858)5340508,emchan@ucsd.edu,Chairman USCSchoolofMedicineMichaelR.Stallcup,(323)4421289,stallcup@usc.edu, Chairman LudwigCancerResearchCenterTimGahman,(858)5347802,TeamMember

WhatisMolecularBiology?.(n.d.).THEMEDICALNEWS|fromNewsMedical.Net LatestMedicalNewsandResearchfromAroundtheWorld.RetrievedOctober16,2013, fromhttp://www.newsmedical.net/health/WhatisMolecularBiology.aspx USCteamsupwithNYUtoresearchacureforcancer|DailyTrojan.(n.d.).DailyTrojan| UniversityofSouthernCalifornia.RetrievedOctober16,2013,from http://dailytrojan.com/2013/09/22/uscteamsupwithnyutoresearchacureforcancer/ (~2004),Y.(n.d.).WhatIsCancer?WhatCausesCancer?.MedicalNewsToday:The LatestHealthNews.RetrievedOctober16,2013,from http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/info/canceroncology/ Beutler,J.(n.d.).MolecularTargetsLaboratories.CenterforCancerResearch.Retrieved October16,2013,from https://ccrod.cancer.gov/confluence/display/CCRMTDPBeu/Introduction+to+MTL MolecularBiology.(n.d.).DivisionofBiologicalSciences.RetrievedOctober16,2013, fromhttp://biology.ucsd.edu/biosections/mb/ MolecularCausesofCancerandBiologicalMechanismsBioOncology.(n.d.).Genentech BioOncologyCancerResearchandInformationBioOncology.RetrievedOctober16, 2013,fromhttp://www.biooncology.com/molecularcausesofcancer TableofContentsOctober2013,11(10).(n.d.).MolecularCancerResearch. RetrievedOctober16,2013,fromhttp://mcr.aacrjournals.org/content/current Themolecularbiologyofcancer.[MolAspectsMed.2000]PubMedNCBI.(n.d.). NationalCenterforBiotechnologyInformation.RetrievedOctober16,2013,from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11173