A Novel Serine Protease Target for Prevention of Breast Cancer by a Soy Bean-Derived Inhibitor
Annual rept. 1 Jul 1999-30 Jun 2000,
GEORGETOWN UNIV WASHINGTON DC MEDICAL CENTER
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Although the antihormone tamoxifen blocks the early growth of breast cancer, in many cases even small, early tumors begin to invade a womans body and are very difficult to cure. The answer to these problems may lay in the development of an anti-cancer dietary supplement. One of the most promising anti-cancer dietary components is the soybean and soy-derived products. Indeed, one of these products, called the Bowman-Birk Inhibitor concentrate BBIC has recently been approved for cancer prevention trials in people. Interestingly, the active ingredient of BBIC is a small protein that prevents the actions of a cancer to invade the body of the individual. Thus, the mechanism of action of BBIC is completely different from that of tamoxifen. We have now completely cloned a BBI- inhibitable protease, termed matriptase, which is dramatically increased in human breast cancer, where it is found embedded in the cell membrane and exposed to the outside of the cancer cell. We have also found one natural, Kunitz-type inhibitor of matriptase, termed HAI-1. Our study will focus on the mechanisms of interaction of BBI, BBI-related inhibitors, and HAI-1 with matriptase in solution and on breast cancer cells in culture. These studies have direct application for breast cancer prevention.
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Medicine and Medical Research