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博主胡德良:邢台学院外语系英语教授,中国译协专家会员,河北省译协常务理事,邢台市译协副会长。爱好翻译,内容涉及宇宙探秘、医疗卫生、家庭保健、生命科学、能源科学、地球科学、环境科学、散文小说和纪实文学等领域。所译文章曾见于《光明日报》、《科技日报》、《健康时报》、《健康报》、《英语世界》、《英语知识》、《科技英语学习》、《科学之友》、《科学与文化》、《世界科学》、《生命世界》等全国各大报刊。博客特色:英汉对照、图文并茂,融趣味性、科学性、知识性为一体。

发现癌细胞的特性(图)  

2008-01-18 09:29:26|  分类: 医疗保健 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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发现癌细胞的特性(图) - 月亮飞船 - 月亮飞船的博客 

        利用原子力显微镜(AFM)顶住细胞的表面,对细胞进行“触摸”,以确定其柔软程度。

Two studies take different approaches to solving the problem of distinguishing cancerous from healthy cells, paving the way for earlier diagnosis and treatment.

两项研究用不同的方法解决了识别健康细胞与癌细胞的问题,为癌症的及早诊断和治疗打下了基础。

New Research Yields Clues about Makeup of Cancer Cells

By Larry Greenemeier  胡德良

 Breast cancer has proved especially difficult to find and fight due to the cancer cells' ability to blend in with healthy ones. Careful examination of the chemical makeup and shape of normal and diseased cells, however, promises to help doctors draw cancer out of the shadows.  事实证明,乳腺癌特别不易发现,而且难于治疗,因为其癌细胞能够与健康细胞混杂在一起。然而,仔细研究正常细胞与病变细胞的化学特性及形状,有助于医生们把癌细胞从隐蔽处出来。
 Researchers at University of Michigan's Comprehensive Cancer Center in Ann Arbor report in Cell Stem Cell that they found a marker that can be used to identify cancer stem cells in breast tumors. Even though they account for only 5 percent of cells in tumors, stem cells (defined by their ability to generate identical cells and to morph into other cell types) are believed to play a key role in the spread of cancer.  密歇根大学癌症综合研究中心的研究人员在《细胞干细胞》杂志上报道说,他们发现了一种标记物,可以用来识别乳腺癌中的肿瘤干细胞。干细胞之所以被称为干细胞,是因为它们既能够制造出完全相同的细胞,又能够转化为其他类型的细胞。尽管肿瘤干细胞只占肿瘤细胞的5%,但研究人员相信它们在癌症扩散的过程中起着关键的作用。
 The Michigan study, which began in late 2004, indicates cells from normal and cancerous breast tissue that contain high levels of the enzyme group aldehyde dehydrogenase(ALDH) acted like stem cells. Of the 577 human breast cancer tissue samples studied, those with tumors that tested positive for ALDH1—a specific form of the enzyme—were less likely to survive and were 1.76 times more likely to develop metastases than patients with ALDH1-negative tumors. ALDH1 was found in 19 percent to 30 percent of the study samples.  密歇根大学的研究开始于2004年。该研究显示,正常乳腺组织和癌变乳腺组织的细胞中均含有大量的乙醛脱氢酶(ALDH)酶组,它们所起的作用就如同干细胞。研究人员研究了577份人类乳腺组织的试样。那些患有肿瘤的病人,而且在1型乙醛脱氢酶(ALDH1一种具体类型的乙醛脱氢酶)测试中呈阳性的,比该测试呈阴性的病人生存下来的可能性要小,发生转移的可能性却要高出1.76倍。研究人员在19%30%的研究试样中发现了1型乙醛脱氢酶。
 The presence of ALDH1 in both normal and malignant stem cells supports the theory that they are the primary target of transformation to malignancy, says study senior author Gabriela Dontu, an assistant professor of internal medicine. "We believe it is only a very small population of cells that really are capable of unlimited growth and therefore drive cancer recurrence and metastasis," she says. "The fact that normal and cancer stem cells share a common feature gives more support that cancers arise from normal stem cells."  该研究的发起人、内科医学资深助理教授加布里埃拉·冬图指出,1型乙醛脱氢酶既存在于正常干细胞中又存在于恶性干细胞中,这说明了该理论是正确的:在癌变过程中,干细胞是由良性转变为恶性的主要目标。她说:我们认为干细胞只是细胞中的一小部分,但它们真正地能够无限增多,所以可以促使癌症复发和转移。正常干细胞和癌变干细胞拥有共同的特征,这个事实更加确切地说明了癌症产生于正常干细胞。
 The clinical implications of this stem cell model of carcinogenesis "changes the way we approach early diagnostic prognosis and, very importantly, how we develop therapy," Dontu adds. As the research progresses, she and her colleagues plan to develop therapeutic strategies that might eliminate cancer stem cells in breast tumors and cancers from other tissues. The researchers acknowledge, however, that more work is needed before these findings can be applied in clinical tests or treatments.  冬图还说:针对致癌干细胞所进行的这项典型的研究,其临床意义在于能够改变我们对早期诊断的处理方式,而且更重要的是,还会影响到我们将如何改善治疗。随着研究的进展,冬图及同事们计划开发一些治疗方法,也许可以剔除乳腺肿瘤及其他患癌组织中的癌变干细胞。然而研究人员承认,在这些发现应用于临床实验和临床治疗之前,还需要进一步做研究工作。
 In a related study, a group of University of California, Los Angeles, researchers are hunting specifically for the cancer cells in body cavity fluids. The team reports in the online edition of Nature Nanotechnology that conventional diagnostic methods—such as using cell markers—detect about 70 percent of cases in which cancer cells are present in the fluid, but miss the rest.  在一项相关的研究中,加州大学洛杉矶分校的研究人员正在专门寻找腔内液体中的癌细胞。研究小组在《自然纳米技术》杂志网络版上报道说:利用传统的诊断方式(如:通过细胞标记物),可以查明约70%腔内液体出现癌细胞的病例,其余的将被遗漏。
 The U.C. Los Angeles researchers, using an optical microscope, found that normal and cancer cells extracted from chest cavity fluid of patients with lung, breast and pancreatic cancers looked very similar. But when they attached an atomic force microscope (AFM) to the ordinary optical scope, they were able to use its minute, sharp tip to "feel" the cells, by pushing against a cell's surface to determine its degree of softness, says study co-author Jianyu Rao, a researcher at U.C.L.A.'s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center and an associate professor of pathology and laboratory medicine.  加州大学洛杉矶分校的研究人员利用光学显微镜发现,从肺癌、乳腺癌和胰腺癌患者的胸腔液体中提取出来的正常细胞和癌变细胞看起来非常相似。但是,该研究的发起人之一、病理学及检验医学副教授、加州大学洛杉矶分校琼森癌症综合研究中心的研究人员饶建宇(音译)说,当把一台原子力显微镜(AFM)连接在普通光学显微镜上时,他们就能够利用微小而尖利的测头对细胞进行触摸,方法是把测头顶在细胞的表面,以确定细胞的柔软程度。
 An AFM is not actually a microscope but rather a device with an extremely small silicon probe that can be attached to an optical microscope for imaging, measuring and manipulating matter at the nanoscale. "It's like a finger that feels the softness of a cell," says James Gimzewski, a U.C.L.A. professor of chemistry and biochemistry and a member of the school's California NanoSystems Institute. The probe's tip is typically no larger than 20 nanometers in diameter.  原子力显微镜实际上不是显微镜,而是带有极其微小的定硅测头的装置,可以安装在光学显微镜上,用来在纳米的尺度上成像、测量和对物质进行操纵。加州大学洛杉矶分校化学及生物化学教授、加州纳米技术研究院成员詹姆斯·吉姆泽娃斯基指出:这就象用一个手指来感觉细胞的软硬程度一样。这种测头顶尖部位的直径通常不过20纳米。
 After probing a cell, the AFM assigns a value that represents how soft a cell is based on the resistance encountered. The researchers found that the cancer cells are much softer than normal cells, which come in varying degrees of stiffness. This was true of all the pancreas, lung and breast cells studied.  在探测一个细胞之后,根据所遇到的阻力,原子力显微镜就会赋予一个表明细胞柔软度的数值。研究人员发现,尽管正常细胞的硬度各有不同,但癌细胞比正常细胞要柔软得多,所研究的胰腺、肺部和乳腺细胞均是如此。
 Rao and his colleagues want to use the touchy-feely AFM to test primary tumors for malignancy and study how different cancers behave. "Some tumor cells might be more rigid than others, meaning that they may be less metastatic," and thereby the patient is in less danger, Rao says.  饶建宇及同事想利用敏感的原子力显微镜来探测主要类型的肿瘤是否有恶化倾向,并研究不同癌症的表现情况。他指出:一些肿瘤的细胞可能比另外一些更为坚硬,那就意味着这些肿瘤恶化转移的可能性较小,对病人的威胁也较小。
 Looking ahead, the AFM is most likely to be used not as an initial detection tool, but rather as a means of checking whether cancer is spreading or in remission. Fluid buildup is not necessarily an indication of cancer, so understanding the nature of the cells in this fluid is very important to determining possible treatments, according to the scientists. "We have to check the fluid to see if it's positive for cancer," Rao says, "because this can determine if a treatment needs to be more aggressive."  展望未来,很可能不会把原子力显微镜用来当作初始诊断的工具,而会用它来检查癌症是正在扩散,还是正在缓解。科学家们认为,积液不一定说明患有癌症,因此了解液体中细胞的性质对于确定可行的治疗方案是很重要的。饶建宇说我们必须检查腔内液体,看看是否的确患有癌症,因为只有这样才能确定是否需要采取积极的治疗措施。
 U.C.L.A. researchers are also using the AFM to study the effects of different drugs on cancer cells. "We want to see how cells change with the drugs that we use on them," says study co-author Sarah Cross, a U.C.L.A. graduate student in the chemistry and biochemistry department. The goal is to develop less toxic drugs than currently available to stop normal cells from becoming cancerous, thus stopping the deadly spread of the disease.  加州大学洛杉矶分校的研究人员还利用原子力显微镜来研究不同药物对癌细胞的影响。另一位研究人员、加州大学洛杉矶分校化学及生物化学系研究生莎拉·克罗斯说:针对细胞用药后,我们想看看在药物的作用下细胞的变化情况。该研究的目标是,开发出比当前所用的药物毒性更小、但同样能够阻止正常细胞发生癌变的药物,以免因癌症扩散而危及生命。

译自:《科学美国人》网站
 

月亮飞船经典日志导读

 白血病人的化疗用药剂量  血 液 的 未 来
 C反应蛋白质在心脏病发作中的作用  睡眠中的性活动揭秘
 利用血检诊断致命的移植并发症(图)  止痛药物可使血压升高
 帮助传播疾病的贪婪病毒(图)  偶尔吸烟也会削弱动脉功能
 中风的危险在家庭中蔓延  早孕期间饮酒会造成胎儿细胞死亡
 预防中风的新药——阿哌沙班  葡萄籽提取物可以杀死白血病细胞

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