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What Causes Chemo to not work????? Read on!!


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BALTIMORE, MD, United States (UPI) -- U.S. scientists have discovered how a 'detox' gene causes chemotherapy resistance in a common form of lung cancer.

Johns Hopkins University researchers say products made by a gene called NRF2 normally protect cells from environmental pollutants such as cigarette smoke by absorbing the materials and pumping them from the cell. Another gene called KEAP1 encodes products that halt the cleansing process. But lung cancer cells sabotage the expression of these same genes to block assault from chemotherapy drugs.

'What we`re seeing is that lung cancer cells recruit and distort NRF2 and KEAP1 expression to help tumor cells evade the toxic effects of chemotherapy,' said Associate Professor Shyam Biswal, who led the cell culture study.

Biswal said blocking NRF2 activity could improve the effectiveness of standard chemotherapy drugs, particularly platinum-based compounds widely used for lung cancer.

The research appears in the Oct. 3 issue of the journal PLoS Medicine.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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