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Protein’s role in AML could lead to new therapies

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Posted: Wednesday, February 12, 2014 6:15 pm | Updated: 6:20 pm, Wed Feb 12, 2014.

A key protein’s over expression has been linked to acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and could be the key to new treatments for the cancer, according to researchers from the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio.

AML causes blood cells that would normally turn into healthy white blood cells to instead differentiate and grow in an abnormal way. Researchers found a high level of a protein called WTAP contributed to this kind of abnormal behavior, so attempted to find what caused levels to be so high. By suppressing another protein, which acts as a sort of “molecular chaperone,” called Hsp90, researchers found levels of WTAP were reduced. The hope is the discovery could lead to more effective treatments for AML in future.

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