Grant ID RP160775
Awarded On May 18, 2016
Title Becoming fatter to survive: cancer cells increase lipid storage to counter metabolic stress
Program Academic Research
Award Mechanism High Impact/High Risk
Institution/Organization The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston
Principal Investigator/Program Director Guangwei Du
Cancer Sites All Sites
Contracted Amount $200,000
Lay Summary

The primary challenge in cancer therapy is how to kill cancer cells without harming normal cells. To solve this, we propose exploiting the fact that cancer cells require more lipids than normal cells, due in part to their increased proliferation. Supporting this dependency, our lab and others have recently found that cancer cells store more lipids in the form of triglycerides, possibly due to the overexpression of enzymes that synthesize triglycerides in many cancers. One such enzyme is DGAT1, and we have seen in preliminary studies that inhibiting DGAT1 promotes cancer cell death. These data suggest that lipid storage is critical for cancer progression and maintenance, and that targeting en...

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