Tag: Gupta Lab

Image of an invasive outgrowth of cancer cells

Biomarker identified for likely aggressive, early stage breast cancer

April 3, 2017

Whitehead Institute scientists have identified a gene that could help clinicians discern which patients have aggressive forms of early stage breast cancer, which could prevent hundreds of thousands of women from undergoing unnecessary treatment and save millions of dollars.

Naturally occurring mechanism of cancer drug-resistance may itself be a treatment target

December 26, 2016

The use of proteasome inhibitors to treat cancer has been greatly limited by the ability of cancer cells to develop resistance to these drugs. But Whitehead Institute researchers have found a mechanism underlying this resistance--a mechanism that naturally occurs in many diverse cancer types and that may expose vulnerabilities to drugs that spur the natural cell-death process.

Image of human mammary model

Engineered hydrogel scaffolds enable growth of functioning human breast tissue

March 1, 2016

Whitehead Institute researchers have created a hydrogel scaffold that replicates the environment found within the human breast. The scaffold supports the growth of human mammary tissue from patient-derived cells and can be used to study normal breast development as well as breast cancer initiation and progression.

Image of cells with and without RUNX1 turned on

Scientists identify gene required for differentiation of breast stem cells

May 6, 2015

Scientists have applied a new method of analyzing cell states to identify a gene required for breast stem cells to differentiate. This gene, RUNX1, is deregulated or mutated in some leukemias and breast cancers. The novel approach, known as PEACS, could also be used to screen for drugs that activate or inhibit the expression regulators of stem cell differentiation.

Images of mouse lung cells untreated and treated with a PERK inhibitor

Seemingly invincible cancer stem cells reveal a weakness

June 5, 2014

Metastatic cancer cells, which can migrate from primary tumors to seed new malignancies, have thus far been resistant to the current arsenal of anticancer drugs. Now, however, researchers at Whitehead Institute have identified a critical weakness that actually exploits one of these cells’ apparent strengths—their ability to move and invade tissues. Their research could inform novel approaches to screening tumors for personalized therapy or to drugs that specifically target these cells.

Diagram of cancer cell type equilibrium

Cancer stem cells made, not born

August 18, 2011

New findings by scientists at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard and Whitehead Institute point to a decentralized society in tumors, with cancer cells able to interconvert between different types. These results have potential implications for the treatment of tumors, in particular, that attacking cancer stem cells alone may not be enough to fight cancer.

New Whitehead Member Piyush Gupta takes aim at normal and cancer stem cells

August 11, 2010

Cancer biologist Piyush Gupta joins the Whitehead Institute faculty in September on a mission to shed new light on the mechanisms that determine why some cells in our bodies behave appropriately while others venture down destructive, malignant paths.

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