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Lecture 18

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Western University
Biology 1002B
Tom Haffie

Lecture 18: Cancer  President Nixon declared “War on Cancer” in 1971 o Some cancer has declined but not dramatically o Cancer are complex, very hard to solve, harder than flying into space  Epigenetic regulation of learning and memory by drosophila EHMT/G9a  In Canada, men are at higher risk cancer than women o Women contract cancer is 40% and 27% die o Men contract cancer 45% and about 30+% will die from cancer  The top four cancers are: o Breast cancer o Prostate cancer o Colon cancer o Lung cancer  Cancer is the leading cause of premature death in Canada o 40% of women and 45% of men will develop cancer o Lung, prostate, breast and colorectal most common o 25% of Canadians can expect to die of cancer o Rates among youth are rising in industrial countries  Heritability estimates from twin studies? o Where does cancer fall on the list …  It depends on the type of cancer  But it is on the low end, 0.27 – 0.42  Embryogenesis rapidly dividing cells o Cyclin/CDK (inase) complexes regulate cycling  G1/S check point, stop cell from duplication  Check point is monitored by CDK2  Activiated CDK2 phosphorylates target protein for G1/S  Transfer phosphors around  Only active with cyclin  Post translation regulation  There are 2 more of these cyclin to control the other 2 check points  Expression of proto-oncogenes promotes cell cycling: e.g. EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor) o Membrane protein o There’s a transmembrane domain and an internal signaling domain o It’s an embryo gene o EGFR is on all the time, it is mutated, so that the cell divides uncontrollably  They think they found the gene that cause cancer  They call it oncogenes  If they are unregulated, or mutated, cell division is uncontrolled o When they are functioning, it is called proto-oncogenes  EGFR pathways o There’s a very complex signaling pathway o Biochemical pathways, from the surface to the nucleus o This is complex, o Any of those proteins can be a oncogene, if they are deregulated o Many ways to mess up cell regulation  Expression of tumor suppressor genes slows cell cycling e.g. p53 o “TP53” is a master tumour suppressor gene, coding a transcription factor whose activity can result in o These genes suppress the embryo genes, when the baby was an embryo and it’s about to mature, the cell division is slowed by this gene  Increased DNA repair  Cell cycle arrest by blocking cyclin/CDK  Apoptosis  There are genes that allow cell division and genes that suppress cell division  Sporadic can
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