Saturday, April 20, 2024

How a DNA repair study is helping cancer studies

    DNA damage takes place when cells are exposed to radiation which can stall or hurry cell growth leading to aging and cancer. Scientists got together to study further just how damaged DNA cells are mobile. Tubules form to catch DNA breaks when a network of microtubules pushes on the nuclear envelope after DNA inside a nucleus is damaged. The formation of these tubules are promoted by the regulators DNA damage response kinases and tubulin acetyltransferase. The nuclear envelope tubules are used to repair DNA in cells but, cancer cells seem to need them the most. The study continued to analyze more than 8,500 cancer patients to reveal that "targeting factors that modulate the nuclear envelope for damaged DNA repair effectively restrains breast cancer development" (Science Daily). In aggressive cancers, tubule levels are elevated due to having more damaged DNA than average cells. It was found that when fewer tubules were present, the cancer cells were more resistant to PARP inhibitors. The enzyme PARP binds to damaged DNA, while PARP inhibitors block this action, which makes the resulting DNA impossible for cells to replicate. 

    While reading the article, various different studies were brought up and it was explained how many of these articles had been "piggy-backing" off of each other, using the last new results to find newer results. I find it refreshing to see this, especially in studies involving cancer. I thought it was super interesting to read about how each finding lead to the next, and how scientists are trying to piece everything together to hopefully help those affected by cancer. Reading about how there is a correlation found with tubules and PARP, and how certain processes, like the use of tubules, are needed more by some cells rather than others. 


  1. This gave me a good understanding of one of the ways in which the body can be more susceptible to cancer. Im interested to see how this is going to influence future treatment options.

  2. This is incredible research! As someone who's family has a history of cancer I know any advancement is a huge step. Understanding the mechanisms behind DNA repair and targeting factors like tubules offers hope for more effective treatment strategies in the battle against cancer.

  3. This was very interesting, Jacqueline! It is always encouraging to see new cancer research, especially as someone with a large family history of various forms of cancer. Like you said, understanding how everyone builds off of each other is so great and this collaboration will hopefully lead to a massive breakthrough someday soon. Thank you for sharing!