Targeting of Actin Crosslinking Proteins for the Development of Anti-Cancer Therapeutics

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Early detection of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma is essential for patients to have a chance for survival.  The inventors have identified proteins that are significantly upregulated in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma while related paralogs are not.  Targets have been  identified and used to screen small molecule modulators to Identify therapeutic agents for cancer.

Metastatic disease is responsible for the majority of cancer-related deaths, and as cells undergo transformation from healthy to metastasis, the cell’s biomechanical machinery undergoes dramatic shifts in composition.  The inventors have identified key cytoskeletal proteins, which undergo these changes during pancreatic cancer progression.  The inventors have identified major crosslinking proteins that are upregulated in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma while related paralogs are not.  Further, the investigators have an established assay which will allow them to screen for small molecule modulators (potential future drugs) that increase or decrease activity of these crosslinking proteins in a single assay.
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Sonriza Ford
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