373 research outputs found

    Editorial: Sirtuinome Rewiring to Hijack Cancer Cell Behavior and Hamper Resistance to Anticancer Intervention

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    In this Research Topic we collected original studies (mini)review and perspective articles that were focused on the SIRT-dependent mechanisms that underlie various tumor- and cancer-related processes, both at cellular and tissue level

    Marine-Derived Secondary Metabolites as Promising Epigenetic Bio-Compounds for Anticancer Therapy

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    Sessile organisms such as seaweeds, corals, and sponges continuously adapt to both abiotic and biotic components of the ecosystem. This extremely complex and dynamic process often results in different forms of competition to ensure the maintenance of an ecological niche suitable for survival. A high percentage of marine species have evolved to synthesize biologically active molecules, termed secondary metabolites, as a defense mechanism against the external environment. These natural products and their derivatives may play modulatory roles in the epigenome and in disease-associated epigenetic machinery. Epigenetic modifications also represent a form of adaptation to the environment and confer a competitive advantage to marine species by mediating the production of complex chemical molecules with potential clinical implications. Bioactive compounds are able to interfere with epigenetic targets by regulating key transcriptional factors involved in the hallmarks of cancer through orchestrated molecular mechanisms, which also establish signaling interactions of the tumor microenvironment crucial to cancer phenotypes. In this review, we discuss the current understanding of secondary metabolites derived from marine organisms and their synthetic derivatives as epigenetic modulators, highlighting advantages and limitations, as well as potential strategies to improve cancer treatment

    Single-Cell Photothermal Analysis Induced by MoS2 Nanoparticles by Raman Spectroscopy

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    : Two-dimensional nanomaterials, such as MoS2 nanosheets, have been attracting increasing attention in cancer diagnosis and treatment, thanks to their peculiar physical and chemical properties. Although the mechanisms which regulate the interaction between these nanomaterials and cells are not yet completely understood, many studies have proved their efficient use in the photothermal treatment of cancer, and the response to MoS2 nanosheets at the single-cell level is less investigated. Clearly, this information can help in shedding light on the subtle cellular mechanisms ruling the interaction of this 2D material with cells and, eventually, to its cytotoxicity. In this study, we use confocal micro-Raman spectroscopy to reconstruct the thermal map of single cells targeted with MoS2 under continuous laser irradiation. The experiment is performed by analyzing the water O-H stretching band around 3,400 cm-1 whose tetrahedral structure is sensitive to the molecular environment and temperature. Compared to fluorescence-based approaches, this Raman-based strategy for temperature measurement does not suffer fluorophore instability, which can be significant under continuous laser irradiation. We demonstrate that irradiation of human breast cancer MCF7 cells targeted with MoS2 nanosheets causes a relevant photothermal effect, which is particularly high in the presence of MoS2 nanosheet aggregates. Laser-induced heating is strongly localized near such particles which, in turn, tend to accumulate near the cytoplasmic membrane. Globally, our experimental outcomes are expected to be important for tuning the nanosheet fabrication process

    DNA Mutations via Chern-Simons Currents

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    We test the validity of a possible schematization of DNA structure and dynamics based on the Chern-Simons theory, that is a topological field theory mostly considered in the context of effective gravity theories. By means of the expectation value of the Wilson Loop, derived from this analogue gravity approach, we find the point-like curvature of genomic strings in KRAS human gene and COVID-19 sequences, correlating this curvature with the genetic mutations. The point-like curvature profile, obtained by means of the Chern-Simons currents, can be used to infer the position of the given mutations within the genetic string. Generally, mutations take place in the highest Chern-Simons current gradient locations and subsequent mutated sequences appear to have a smoother curvature than the initial ones, in agreement with a free energy minimization argument

    The Ubiquitin Proteasome System in Hematological Malignancies: New Insight into Its Functional Role and Therapeutic Options

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    The ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) is the main cellular degradation machinery designed for controlling turnover of critical proteins involved in cancer pathogenesis, including hematological malignancies. UPS plays a functional role in regulating turnover of key proteins involved in cell cycle arrest, apoptosis and terminal differentiation. When deregulated, it leads to several disorders, including cancer. Several studies indicate that, in some subtypes of human hematological neoplasms such as multiple myeloma and Burkitt's lymphoma, abnormalities in the UPS made it an attractive therapeutic target due to pro-cancer activity. In this review, we discuss the aberrant role of UPS evaluating its impact in hematological malignancies. Finally, we also review the most promising therapeutic approaches to target UPS as powerful strategies to improve treatment of blood cancers

    Sirtuin functions and modulation: from chemistry to the clinic

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    Sirtuins are NAD+ -dependent histone deacetylases regulating important metabolic pathways in prokaryotes and eukaryotes and are involved in many biological processes such as cell survival, senescence, proliferation, apoptosis, DNA repair, cell metabolism, and caloric restriction. The seven members of this family of enzymes are considered potential targets for the treatment of human pathologies including neurodegenerative diseases, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer. Furthermore, recent interest focusing on sirtuin modulators as epigenetic players in the regulation of fundamental biological pathways has prompted increased efforts to discover new small molecules able to modify sirtuin activity. Here, we review the role, mechanism of action, and biological function of the seven sirtuins, as well as their inhibitors and activators

    Epigenetic mechanisms underlying prostate cancer radioresistance

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    Radiotherapy (RT) is one of the mainstay treatments for prostate cancer (PCa), a highly prevalent neoplasm among males worldwide. About 30% of newly diagnosed PCa patients receive RT with a curative intent. However, biochemical relapse occurs in 20-40% of advanced PCa treated with RT either alone or in combination with adjuvant-hormonal therapy. Epigenetic alterations, frequently associated with molecular variations in PCa, contribute to the acquisition of a radioresistant phenotype. Increased DNA damage repair and cell cycle deregulation decreases radio-response in PCa patients. Moreover, the interplay between epigenome and cell growth pathways is extensively described in published literature. Importantly, as the clinical pattern of PCa ranges from an indolent tumor to an aggressive disease, discovering specific targetable epigenetic molecules able to overcome and predict PCa radioresistance is urgently needed. Currently, histone-deacetylase and DNA-methyltransferase inhibitors are the most studied classes of chromatin-modifying drugs (so-called 'epidrugs') within cancer radiosensitization context. Nonetheless, the lack of reliable validation trials is a foremost drawback. This review summarizes the major epigenetically induced changes in radioresistant-like PCa cells and describes recently reported targeted epigenetic therapies in pre-clinical and clinical settings
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