Potential new medicine can target proteins on cancer cell surfaces

A light micrograph of breast cancer cells, which could one day be treated by targeting specific proteins on their surface

CNRI/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

A new kind of medicine that destroys specific proteins on the surface of cells could lead to better therapies for conditions such as cancer.

The approach, devised by Xin Zhou at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Massachusetts, and her colleagues, involves using modified antibodies they call TransTACs to join a surface protein to another common protein that is involved in transporting iron into cells. The first protein then gets …

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