Investigating the role of CDCA2 molecule in neuroblastoma
Neuroblastoma is a cancer originating from the peripheral nervous system affecting infants and very young children. Although the major molecular alterations occurring in neuroblastoma have been discovered, clinicians and researchers are still struggling to find ways to inhibit the molecules responsible for tumour growth, especially the neuroblastoma-causing gene called MYCN.
An abnormal increase of MYCN, consequence of a pathological process called gene amplification, has been identified as the most important molecular alteration in neuroblastoma. Unfortunately, no laboratory has been successful, at least so far, in developing a drug that blocks MYCN cancerous activity.
In our laboratory, we have recently identified a link between MYCN and another molecule frequently increased in cancer CDCA2 (also called Repo-Man). In this proposal, we would like to validate a new therapeutic strategy for neuroblastoma based on the development of a molecular inhibitor or CDAC2. Since alterations of MYCN are common in other childhood malignancies of the nervous system, such as medulloblastoma and glioblastoma, this study could pave the way to new therapeutic avenues for children with cancer.