Ovarian cancer is hard to discover until it reaches advanced stages. At this point, it slowly spreads through various organs and may be hard to overcome with chemotherapy.
Researchers from the Ovarian Cancer Institute Laboratory made a discovery that a type of RNA known to help regulate cell function, miR-429, might be effective at fighting ovarian cancer and will allow physicians to turn back the life cycle of the tumor. The RNA is said to inhibit metastatic cancer cells and be converted to a form that may not be as metastatic or invasive, effectively making it less fatal.
Chemotherapy may be much more effective now after these findings.
Epithelial cells are known to grow rapidly and are cohesive to one another, forming a mass or tumor. Cells at the ends of tumors form into mesenchymal cells and become mobile and highly invasive, allowing for the spread of cancer throughout the body.
The study made use of two lines of ovarian cancer cells. One has epithelial characteristics while the other has mesenchymal traits. Application of miR-429 showed significant results against mesenchymal cancer cells, making them less mobile and causing them to behave more like epithelial cancer cells.
A follow up study is currently being done to determine the susceptibility of treated mesenchymal cancer cells to chemotherapy.