An Oregon State University professor has helped develop a technology to kill cancer cells – the research could eventually could be turned into a life-saving drug.
Siva Kolluri is an assistant professor of cancer biology at OSU.
He says that in some ways, cancer cells are like VIPs that move in your body with the help of secret service agents to protect them.
The secret service agents are actually a protein, called BCL2.
And, in a sense, what Kolluri has done is brainwash the secret service agents to kill the cancer cell they are supposed to be protecting.
Michael Melner is the scientific program director at the American Cancer Society. He says the research is important because it could translate to more than one type of cancer.
Michael Melner: “We all know that cancer is not a single disease, it’s hundreds of diseases. The broader interest is, not just for what it means to BCL2, but the potential exists: can similar approaches be used in another cancer?”
The research was published in the medical journal ‘Cancer Cell’.
Kolluri says the next step is to create cancer-fighting drugs that target the secret service agent protein.