[GRG] NewAbs: Hyaluronan Inhibits Cancer in Naked Mole Rats

To Members and Friends of the Los Angeles Gerontology
Research Group: Hyaluronan
(HA) inhibits cancer in naked mole rats…  — Steve Coles

“Molecule Wards Off Mole-Rat

A Sugar Protects the Subterranean
rodents from Out-of-Control Cell Division”by
Kate Yandell
UNIVERSITY OF ROCHESTER, BRANDON VICKJune 20, 2013; (The Scientist) — Cancer often kills
rodents, but naked mole-rats, which can live longer than 30 years,

are not susceptible to the disease. A study published yesterday (June
19th) in

Nature suggests a mechanism for the phenomenon: a sugar in the
spaces between naked mole-rat cells appears to lower the density of cell
growth and prevent tumors from forming.
    The protective substance, called hyaluronan
(HA), is part of the extracellular matrix in many animals, but naked
mole-rats produce large amounts of an HA variant that has a high
molecular weight. Researchers discovered naked mole-rat HA’s unusual
properties when they noticed that naked mole-rat cells in culture tended
not to grow close together and were surrounded by a gooey substance that
clogged the lab’s drains, Nature’s

news site reported.
    “Our lab technician was unhappy because she needed to
disassemble the system and clean all this gooey stuff,” Andrei Seluanov,
a Professor at the University of Rochester in New York and an author of
the paper, said to Nature. “I told my graduate student that we
have to find out what the gooey substance is -­ it should be related to
their cancer resistance. Of course, at that time it was just a wild
    Seluanov and colleagues found that naked mole-rats had
high HA levels because of production-boosting mutations to the enzyme
that synthesizes HA and low activity of the enzyme that degrades the
molecule. The researchers then grafted naked mole-rat cells that had been
modified to express cancer-causing genes into mice. The cells that
maintained HA at high levels did not form tumors in the mice, while the
cells engineered to lack the protective HA molecule
    The researchers also showed that the HA was binding to
the naked mole-rat cells and tapping into a pathway that leads to early
contact inhibition, in which cells cease to divide when they reach a
certain density­a phenomenon previously observed in naked mole-rats. A
similar event inhibits cell growth at high density in other animals, but
naked mole-rats arrest cell growth at especially low densities.
    The researchers told Nature that their next
step is to genetically engineer mice to produce HA like that of naked
mole-rats, in an attempt to produce cancer-resistant mice.



naked mole-rats and,

L. Stephen Coles, M.D., Ph.D., Co-Founder
Los Angeles Gerontology Research GroupURL:
E-mail: scoles@grg.orgE-mail:


About Johnny Adams

My full-time commitment is to slow and ultimately reverse age related functional decline to increase healthy years of life. I’ve been active in this area since the 1970s, steadily building skills and accomplishments. I have a good basic understanding of the science of aging, and have many skills that complement those of scientists so they can focus on science to advance our shared mission. Broad experience Top skills: administration, management, information technology (data and programming), communications, writing, marketing, market research and analysis, public speaking, forging ethical win-win outcomes among stakeholders (i.e. high level "selling"). Knowledge in grant writing, fundraising, finance. Like most skilled professionals, I’m best described as a guy who defines an end point, then figures out how to get there. I enjoy the conception, design, execution and successful completion of a grand plan. Executive Director Gerontology Research Group (GRG). Manages Email discussion forum, web site, meetings and oversees supercentenarian (oldest humans, 110+ years) research. CEO / Executive Director Carl I. Bourhenne Medical Research Foundation (Aging Intervention Foundation), an IRS approved 501(c)(3) nonprofit. http://www.AgingIntervention.org Early contributor to Supercentenarian Research Foundation. Co-Founder Geroscience Healthspan Forum. Active contributor to numerous initiatives to increase healthy years of life. Co-authored book on conventional, practical methods available today to slow the processes of aging – nutrition, exercise, behavior modification and motivation, stress reduction, proper supplementation, damage caused by improper programs, risk reduction and others. Fundamental understanding of, and experience in the genomics of longevity (internship analyzing and curating longevity gene papers). Biological and technical includes information technology, software development and computer programming, bioinformatics and protein informatics, online education, training programs, regulatory, clinical trials software, medical devices (CAT scanners and related), hospital electrical equipment testing program. Interpersonal skills – good communication, honest, well liked, works well in teams or alone. Real world experience collaborating in interdisciplinary teams in fast paced organizations. Uses technology to advance our shared mission. Education: MBA 1985 University of Southern California -- Deans List, Albert Quon Community Service Award (for volunteering with the American Longevity Association and helping an elderly lady every other week), George S. May Scholarship, CA State Fellowship. BA psychology, psychobiology emphasis 1983 California State University Fullerton Physiological courses as well as core courses (developmental, abnormal etc). UCLA Psychobiology 1978, one brief but fast moving and fulfilling quarter. Main interest was the electrochemical basis of consciousness. Also seminars at the NeuroPsychiatric Institute. Other: Ongoing conferences, meetings and continuing education. Aging, computer software and information technology. Some molecular biology, biotech, bio and protein informatics, computer aided drug design, clinical medical devices, electronics, HIPAA, fundraising through the Assoc. of Fundraising Professionals. Previous careers include: Marketing Increasing skill set and successes in virtually all phases, with valuable experience in locating people and companies with the greatest need and interest in a product or service, and sitting across the table with decision makers and working out agreements favorable to all. Information Technology: Management, data analysis and programming in commercial and clinical trials systems, and bioinformatics and protein informatics. As IT Director at Newport Beach, CA based technology organization Success Family of Continuing Education Companies, provided online software solutions for insurance and financial professionals in small to Fortune 500 size companies. We were successful with lean team organization (the slower moving competition was unable to create similar software systems). Medical devices: At Omnimedical in Paramount CA developed and managed quality assurance dept. and training depts. for engineers, physicians and technicians. Designed hospital equipment testing program for hospital services division. In my early 20’s I was a musician, and studied psychology and music. Interned with the intention of becoming a music therapist. These experiences helped develop valuable skills used today to advance our shared mission of creating aging solutions.
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One Response to [GRG] NewAbs: Hyaluronan Inhibits Cancer in Naked Mole Rats

  1. Pingback: [GRG] NewAbs: Hyaluronan Inhibits Cancer in Naked Mole Rats | Naked of Cancer

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