Scientists in America have discovered a protein that can be used to prevent the growth and spread of breast cancer.

In a study published in the journal Cancer Research, Nischarin, a novel protein, and proven tumour suppressor, was specifically studied to see how it functions in exosome release. Exosomes change the behaviour of cells; and tumour exosomes play a key role in spreading cancer. It was found that Nischarin alters the properties of these exosomes to ‘reduce breast cancer cell motility and adhesion, as well as tumour volume’.

“Inhibition of the secretion of exosomes may serve as an effective treatment for cancer,” explained lead researcher, Dr Suresh Alahari, the Fred Brazda Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Louisiana State University Health New Orleans School of Medicine. “It has been shown that exosomes can be developed as carriers for delivering drugs. Nischarin-expressing exosomes in combination with drugs will likely have very good therapeutic effect on breast cancer patients.”