Inhibiting apoptosis is the key function of MCL-1 in breast cancer

1st April 2021

MCL1A study - led by Kirsteen Campbell, Stephen Tait and Karen Blyth and funded by Breast Cancer Now - has shown that a protein called MCL-1 helps breast cancer cells survive and replicate by blocking apoptosis (cell death), and that tumours rely on it to grow more aggressively.

Importantly, a type of drug called BH3 mimetics target MCL-1 and could be used to restart apoptosis in breast cancer. What's more, this finding could have also implications for other cancers including leukaemia, those affecting the lung and glioblastoma.

For more details, see this article published in The Herald.

Reference: Campbell KJ, Mason SM, Winder ML, Willemsen RBE, Cloix C, Lawson H, Rooney N, Dhayade S, Sims AH, Blyth K, Tait SWG. Breast cancer dependence on MCL-1 is due to its canonical anti-apoptotic function. Cell Death Differ. 2021. Online ahead of print.

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