Duke researchers have discovered that the Abl and Arg protein kinases contribute to the formation and activity of invadopodia. Invadopodia are described as foot-like structures that allow cancer cells to travel from the primary tumor to other parts of the body. The invadopodia contain matrix metalloproteinase (MMP), a chemical that creates openings in surrounding tissue that act as an escape hatch of sorts for the cancer cells. Lead author Ann Marie Pendergast said studies should investigate whether Abl/Arg inhibitors would be useful concomitant treatments for patients with cancer to help prevent metastases. Complete findings appear in the December 17 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry
.Published in Oncology & Biotech News. January 2011.