News

AddToAny

Google+ Facebook Twitter Twitter

Cells keep together for protection

Cell-to-cell contacts are necessary for the survival of human cells under protein-damaging conditions and stress.

This was a conclusion reached by a research team from Åbo Akademi University, who said they were surprised by the findings, because the molecules they studied are usually linked with other cellular functions.

Lea Sistonen, Professor in Cell and Molecular Biology, said: “Our results show, for the first time, that the contacts between cells, known as cell adhesion, are essential for cells to survive stress.

“The findings also suggest that impaired cell adhesion may sensitise cancer cells to drugs that damage cell proteins and cause stress.”

The research project focused on heat shock factor 2 (HSF2), a specialised gene-regulating protein, and its impact on cells’ capacity to survive protein-damaging stress.

Protein-damaging stress is caused by, for example, high temperatures, virus infections and certain anti-cancer medications.

The results showed that HSF2 contributes to protecting cells against stress by regulating those genes that mediate cell adhesion contacts.  

bit.ly/2G6pIhZ

Image credit | Shutterstock

Related Articles

"Cancer cells hibernate in lungs"

Healthy lung cells support the survival of breast cancer cells, allowing them to hibernate in the lung before forming secondary tumours.

April science news in numbers

A breakdown of science news this month, in numbers.

The emerging pandemic

Sarah May, IBMS Deputy Chief Executive, says that in times of panic and hysteria, we need to look at the evidence and listen to the scientists.

The first UK lab to identify COVID-19

Biomedical scientist Martine Jensen gives a guided tour of her lab at of the Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust.

Top