New DLL4 Vaccine May Prevent Breast Tumors

Mon, 07/26/2010 - 08:10

We at Novus Biologicals have a large antibody database devoted to signalling pathways. These underpin every area of molecular biological research, including cancer. Among our cell signalling antibodies is one targeted to DLL4 (Delta-like protein 4). DLL4 is a homologue of the Drosophila delta gene, known to encode DSL-domain ligands on the Notch signaling pathway. It has been shown to play an important role in regulating the angiogenesis, especially those of malignant tumors.

For a tumor to grow beyond a few millimeters in size, new blood vessels must be grown, or the tumor cells will be starved of nutrients and oxygen. DLL4 plays an important role in this. When a new blood vessel begins to sprout from an existing one, DLL4 is expressed in the tip cells. This blocks neighboring cells from forming new capillaries of their own.

Immunohistochemistry-Paraffin: DLL4 Antibody Immunohistochemistry-Paraffin: DLL4 Antibody

If DLL4 expression is blocked in tumor cells, there is a pronounced increase in the development of new, but non-functioning blood vessels. This slows the tumor’s growth. Recently, a group at the Karolinska Institute developed a DNA-vaccine active against DLL4 in mouse breast tumors. Vaccination resulted in an antibodyresponse against DLL4, slowing tumor growth. When examined, the tumors were found to have a tightly-packed mass of non-functioning blood vessels, resulting in poor blood supply and nutrient and oxygen starvation. There appeared to be no other ill effects.

This study crosses into many of the areas covered by our antibody catalog, including hypoxia and apoptosis. Evidently, much research still needs to be done, but it is hoped that a vaccine for human breast cancer patients in one step closer to reality.

Novus Biologicals offers many DLL4 reagents for your research needs including:


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