Sunday, December 10, 2023

YAPon/YAPoff – Sinai scientists’ findings place all cancers in two categories

Scientists at Sinai Health have found that all cancers fall into just two categories. Their findings could provide a new strategy for treating the most aggressive and untreatable forms of the disease, reports Medical Xpress. Researchers at the Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute (LTR) divide all cancers into two groups, based on the presence or absence of a protein called the Yes-associated protein, or YAP. Each classification exhibits different drug sensitivities or resistance. YAP plays an important role in the formation of malignant tumours because it is an important regulator and effector of the Hippo signaling pathway. “Not only is YAP either off or on, but it has opposite pro- or anti-cancer effects in either context,” senior scientist Rod Bremner said. “Thus, YAPon cancers need YAP to grow and survive. In contrast, YAPoff cancers stop growing when we switch on YAP.” Many YAPoff cancers are highly lethal. In their new research, Bremner and researchers from the Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, NY, show that some cancers such as prostate and lung can jump from a YAPon state to a YAPoff state to resist therapeutics. The researchers say that by deducing common vulnerabilities of these types of cancer, it may be possible to develop new therapeutic approaches and improve patient outcomes.

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