UCSF Scientists Illuminate How microRNAs Drive Tumor Progression
UCSF researchers, led by Doug Hanahan, Ph.D., have identified collections of tiny molecules known as microRNAs that affect distinct processes critical for cancer progression. The findings help elucidate the important regulatory function of microRNAs in tumor biology. Eric Nakakura, M.D., Ph.D. (pictured), a surgeon-scientist who treats patients with challenging pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors, was on the team that validated the findings, which were based on an exquisite mouse model of pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors. Many of the same altered microRNAs in were found to be present in human pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors. This represents a major advance in our understanding of pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor biology, one that might be exploited to better treat patients.