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Biochemist discovers a promising enzyme to fight cancer cells

Biochemist discovers a promising enzyme to fight cancer cells

A RUDN University biochemist has studied the stimulating effect of chemical substances on the catabolic enzyme PAO (polyamine oxidase). The results could contribute to the development of drugs against cancer. The article is published in the journal Amino Acids.

Polyamines (PA)—spermidine (Spd) and spermine (Spm)—play an important role in the body’s protective reactions. Polyamines are regulators of growth, differentiation and the process of cell death. The dynamics of the metabolism of polyamines is used in the diagnosis of pathologies of systems and organs. Disorders in the metabolism of polyamines lead to an increase in their concentration in the body. This is accompanied by accelerated tissue proliferation due to cell division. This mechanism is typical of various forms of cancer. On the other hand, some decay products by oxidation of polyamines show antitumor and antimicrobial activity and slow the growth of certain types of cancer cells, bacteria and viruses. A RUDN University biochemist proposed to use these properties for the treatment of cancer.

Professor of the Department of Biochemistry of RUDN University Sergey Syatkin designed the structure of the molecule (ligand) with predetermined properties. To do this, he used bioinformatics and computer modeling technologies, primarily molecular docking. This method allowed him to predict how the drug molecules will behave in relation to the target protein. Based on molecular docking data, biochemists synthesized 36 nitrogen-containing substances with different chemical structures. They made a classification of the stimulating effects of these substances on the cells of the body. It turned out that the effects of a potential drug depended on the way in which the special molecules—ligands—included in their composition, accelerated the decay of polyamines by their oxidation.

Using computer simulations, biochemists visually detected how the molecules of inorganic substances that make up the potential drug will dock with one of the mouse proteins. Their classification made it possible to correctly predict the nature of the effects that the substance of the drug will have on the body of an experimental animal. After that, a series of experiments on rats was carried out.

Experiments have shown that substances that can enhance the oxidation of PA can become potential anti-cancer agents. This opens up the prospect of developing antitumor drugs based on the use of substances that activate the rate of decay of PA by enzymatic oxidation.

30 Jan 2018
The conference on international arbitration, where law students from European universities simulate court proceedings and alternately defend the interests of the respondent and the orator.
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Main Publications View all
15 Nov 2017
RUDN University scientists publish results of their scientific researches in highly-recognized in whole world and indexed in international databases journals (Web of Science, Scopus ect.). That, of course, corresponds to the high status of the University and its international recognition. Publications of June-September 2017 ( In Journals of categories Q1-Q3)
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30 Dec
Biologists from RUDN University discovered the secret of flaxseed oil with long shelf life

Biologists from RUDN University working together with their colleagues from the Institute of Molecular Biology of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the Institute of Flax studied the genes that determine the fatty acid composition in flaxseed oil and identified polymorphisms in six of them. The team also found out what gene variations could extend the shelf life of flaxseed oil. This data can be used to improve the genetic selection of new flax breeds. The results were published in the BMC Plant Biology journal.

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11 Oct
Mowing Is More Harmful to Soil Than Grazing

A team of biologists analyzed soil samples from a pasture and a regularly mowed meadow and found out that grazing lets more carbon get into the soil than mowing. This, in turn, improves the carbon cycle and makes microorganisms more efficient.

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11 Oct
Soil scientists suggest method for remediating urban garden soils contaminated with lead and arsenic

The soils of urban gardens and vegetable patches contain a lot of toxicants (including lead and arsenic) in high concentrations which can be harmful to the health of children and people with chronic diseases. A team of soil scientists from RUDN University suggested a remediation method developed based on data collected in a garden of Brooklyn (NY, U.S.).

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