IU School of Medicine Report Targets Breast Cancer

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INDIANAPOLIS -

A new report from the Vera Bradley Foundation Center for Breast Cancer Research at the Indiana University School of Medicine outlines potential future options to treat triple negative breast cancer. Researcher Xiongbin Lu says he and a collaborator have patented a new "nano-bomb" method, which could lead to a targeted therapy option.

Unlike the three most common forms of breast cancer, triple negative breast cancer has no currently approved targeted therapies for treatment.

According to the report, TP53 is the most frequently mutated gene in triple negative breast cancer, meaning it is a catalyst to the growth of this aggressive form of breast cancer. 

However, targeting mutated TP53 genes was not viable because of its ability to kill nearby healthy cells. Lu and his team were able to identify a neighboring gene to TP53, known as POLR2A, which is a viable target for the analysis.

They were able to create what they are calling a "nano-bomb.” The bomb is made in a form that is stable in serum and grows to 100 times its normal size through a controlled release, killing only the cancerous cell and leaving the healthy cells alive. 

Lu and a collaborator have patented the nanotechnology "nano-bomb" method, which also has potential implications in other cancers that display the mutated TP53 gene, such as ovarian, lung and colorectal cancer. 

“We’re still in the early stages of research, but I am excited about this approach and its potential to lead to a targeted therapy option for women with triple negative breast cancer,” Lu said in a news release.

To read the full study, click here. 

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