The role of a protein called maspin in prostate cancer

The cytoskeleton in prostate cancer cells

Spring 2008

£1,700 to the School of Biological Sciences at UEA for a summer studentship to investigate prostate cancer.
The project focuses on the role of a protein called maspin in prostate cancer.  Maspin is produced in large quantities in normal prostate cells, but is reduced or absent in prostate cancer cells.  Initial experiments show that the introduction of maspin into prostate cancer cells in culture makes the cells less mobile and more likely to die.   The cells become less like cancer cells.
This summer studentship will look at how maspin reduces cell movement in prostate cancer cells, investigating whether the addition of maspin can modify the cytoskeleton. The cytoskeleton is the internal skeleton of the cell.  It rearranges to allow changes in cell shape that affect cellular behaviour and movement.  If maspin is capable of reordering the cytoskeleton this may explain how it is able to reduce the mobility of the prostate cancer cells.

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