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Study identifies a potential biomarker for pancreatic tumor grade

October 04, 2016

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) is one of the leading causes of cancer-related deaths, and this high mortality rate is bolstered by a lack of diagnostic techniques to assess tumor grade and severity. This month in the JCI, a team led by Richard Tomasini at INSERM analyzed the expression of proteins in PDA tumors to determine how cells in the tissue surrounding tumors contribute to tumor aggressiveness. They found that cells in tumor-surrounding tissue supported increased tumor growth and metastasis in PDA tumors when they contained extracellular vesicles that expressed a protein called annexin 6. Injection of annexin 6-expressing vesicles into mice increased tumor growth and metastasis, whereas depletion of these vesicles impaired it. Moreover, the levels of annexin 6-expressing vesicles detected in the serum of patients with PDA correlated with patient survival. These findings indicate that measuring levels of annexin 6-expressing vesicles may be a useful diagnostic marker for grading PDA tumors. Moreover, interrupting the activity of these vesicles may be an effective strategy for treating PDA patients.
TITLE: Cancer-associated fibroblast-derived annexin A6+extracellular vesicles support pancreatic cancer aggressiveness


Richard Tomasini

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