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Times of India: Gene’s role in breast-tumour growth unlocked

Published: 2 May 2010

New research helps explain why breast-milk cells lose their structure, causing them to clump up in strange ways and sometimes become cancer tumours. With the support of Chen Ling and Dongmei Zuo at McGill’s Goodman Cancer Centre, McGill Biochemist Dr. William Muller has discovered how one particular gene regulates epithelial cells...

New research helps explain why breast-milk cells lose their structure, causing them to clump up in strange ways and sometimes become cancer tumours.  With the support of Chen Ling and Dongmei Zuo at McGill’s Goodman Cancer Centre, McGill Biochemist Dr. William Muller has discovered how one particular gene regulates epithelial cells – cells that normally form in sheets and are polarized to enable the transport of molecules in a single direction. It’s this loss of polarity that is thought to play an important role in breast tumour development. Scientists at the Ontario Cancer Institute (Princess Margaret Hospital’s research arm) and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York State also contributed to the findings.

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