Search for a new way to identify and treat advanced prostate cancer

In a nutshell

Targeting a novel protein which is found mainly in prostate cancer cells to find a new way to identify and treat advanced prostate cancer.

Why we funded it

Many prostate cancer patients, even if initially responsive to treatment, eventually develop a more aggressive form of the disease. We need to design novel drugs to kill these more aggressive cancer cells or stop them from spreading to other organs. Designing drugs that kill only cancer cells and not normal, healthy cells would be a big step forward, but it is very difficult to do.

The researchers have identified that a novel protein is mainly present in cancerous cells. They also know that prostate cancer cells use this protein to move to other sites in the body. In this project they will investigate whether stopping this protein from working could provide a way to specifically kill prostate cancer cells, or stop them from spreading around the body.

This study may therefore provide new diagnostic tools to identify prostate cancer and possibly predict if a patient has a tumour that is likely to become aggressive.

Grant information

Institution - Queen Mary University of London
Researcher - Dr Tania Maffucci
Grant award - £213,740
Duration - 2014-2017
Reference - PG13-029 Maffucci