2013.09.06 Press Release

Discovery of coordination between two important biological defense mechanisms: Cause for proliferation of cancer cells

A research group led by Professor Masayuki Yamamoto of Medical Biochemistry at the Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine, together with Researcher Yoshinobu Ichimura and Vice-councillor /Researcher Masaaki Komatsu at the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Medical Science, established that two biological defense mechanisms (autophagy and Keap1-Nrf2 pathway) are linked via the phosphorylation of the p62 protein and utilized by cancer cells for their proliferation. With this finding, drug compounds that target the p62 are expected to be candidates for new anti-cancer agents.

The research was conducted as a part of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology as Grants-in-Aid for Scientific Research entitled: "Autophagy from a multi-disciplinary standpoint: from its molecular basis to disease."

The research results have been published online on September 5, 2013 EST in the scientific journal Molecular Cell. The paper's title is "Phosphorylation of p62 Activates the Keap1-Nrf2 Pathway during Selective Autophagy."

More information (Japanese)

Professor Masayuki Yamamoto
Laboratory of Medical Biochemistry, Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine
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[Public Relations]
Associate Professor Fuji Nagami
Public Relations Office of Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine
TEL: +81-22-717-7908
FAX: +81-22-717-8187
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