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FEN1 plays an important role in development of anticancer therapeutics

Chemotherapy is one of the most important treatments of cancer. However, the therapeutic effect of chemotherapy is limited due to the resistance of cancer cells, which remains a challenge in cancer therapeutics.

Recently, the team led by ZhigangGuo, professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at NNU School of Life Sciences, has revealed the important mechanism of the cancer cells’ drug-resistance, which is of great importance in the development of new anticancer therapeutic drugs, the optimization of cancer treatments, the extension of lifespan and the promotion of quality of life.

Related research findings have been verified on lung cancer and esophagus cancer and papers entitled as “FEN1 promotes tumor progression and confers cisplatin resistance in non-smallcell lung cancer” and” Telomerase antagonist imetelstat increases radiation sensitivityin esophageal squamous cell carcinoma” are published on Molecular Oncology (2017 Mar 29. doi: 10.1002/1878-0261.12058., 5-Year IF=6.3) and Oncotarget (2017, Vol. 8, pp: 13600-13611, 5-Year IF=6.0) respectively.

Previous reports have suggested that cancer resistance to DNA damage-inducing agents is associated with the elevated expression of DNA repair enzymes in cancer cells. DNA flap endonuclease 1 (FEN1) is a major component of the base excision repair (BER) pathway for DNA repair systems and plays important roles in maintaining genomic stability through DNA replication and repair. Suppression of FEN1 leads to the retardation of DNA replication and accumulation of unrepaired DNA intermediates, resulting in DNA double strand breaks (DSBs) and apoptosis. Therefore, targeting FEN1 could serve as a potent strategy for cancer therapy.

These findings entitled as “Interacting partners of FEN1 and its role in the development of anticancer therapeutics” are published on Oncotarget (2017 Feb 7. doi: 10.18632/oncotarget.15176.) in the form of review.

The first authors (or co-first authors) of the above-mentioned three papers are Dr. Lingfeng He, Dr. Jing Zhang and Dr. Chandra sekharKathera respectively. The work was supported by The Second Hospital of Nanjing, Jiangsu Cancer Hospial, Shanghai Renji Hospital and Changzhou No.7 People’s Hospital.

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