About 80 percent of all carcinomas are caused by a virus – the so-called merkel cell polyomavirus. Scientists at the university hospital in wurzburg have now succeeded in stopping the uncontrolled proliferation of infected cells.
They focused on the interaction between T antigens and the so-called retinoblastoma protein. The retinoblastoma protein normally prevents the uncontrolled proliferation of corporeal cells. T-antigens, i.E. Proteins that are produced by viruses, set off this uber fray.
Another protein – HSP70 – is a mediator between antigens and the retinoblastoma protein. So the researchers tried to block HSP70 – with some success:
"of the seven cell lines we worked with, five died after treatment.", explains christian adam, research associate at the university skin clinic and first author of the study. This success was not only shown in cell culture, but also in animal experiments. A result that, in adams’ words, "offers a certain amount of hope." Admits.
Many questions still need to be answered before a new drug for the fight against cancer is available on the market. Many more studies and tests are needed before that can happen", so adam. Even if the results so far are promising.