Cutting edge pancreatic cancer research is awarded grant funding

Professor Alex Breeze of the Astbury Centre and Faculty of Biological Sciences has received significant funding for key pancreatic cancer research.

The research will be carried out in collaboration with Professor Mike Waring of Newcastle University. The project is part of five projects that have received funding from the national charity Pancreatic Cancer Research Fund (PCRF).

Professors Breeze and Waring are developing new compounds to block a vicious cycle of signals that occurs in cancer between two proteins called SOS and Ras. Usually, SOS tells Ras to switch on, help a cell divide and then switch off; but when Ras mutates, it becomes permanently switched on and causes cells to divide uncontrollably. Mutated Ras is found in 90 per cent of pancreatic tumours, but blocking it with drugs has not been possible. The team aims to show they can target SOS instead of Ras to block this abnormal interplay of signals. Read more.