Potentially Effective Treatment for Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Liver cancer cells died when the AURKA-MYC interaction was inhibited.

Researchers in a recent study found a new molecular mechanism that can inhibit the growth of hepatocellular carcinoma in humans and mice.

It was discovered that in liver cancers such as hepatocellular carcinoma where the protein p53 is disturbed or inhibited, the interaction between Aurora kinase A (AURKA) and MYC proteins are crucial. Inhibiting the AURKA protein with drug molecules stops this interaction and causes cancer cells to die, according to the study published in Nature Medicine.

Researchers analyzed the interaction between the AURKA and MYC proteins through computer-aided molecular modeling, which also revealed which drugs inhibited the interactions and which did not.

Through targeting the AURKA protein, it could potentially prevent the growth of p53-altered liver cancer and be used to develop new treatments for this cancer, the study concluded.