"During cancer progression, this molecule, known as DDR1, organizes a high-order extracellular matrix that acts like barbed wire around the boundary of a tumor to prevent immune cells from entering the tumor," says Rong Li, the Ross Professor of Basic Science Research at GWU.
Rong Li also states that "Knowing that the DDR1 molecule creates a protective boundary around tumors, we were able to use pre-clinical models to show that the moment you deactivate DDR1, immune cells can infiltrate the tumor and kill the cells inside."
In the Nature study, the researchers assessed the impact of removing DDR1 in multiple pre-clinical models. They determined that knocking out DDR1 not only halts tumor growth but also may protect the body from future tumors
With this more comprehensive understanding of DDR1, researchers also hope to identify additional molecules like DDR1 and use the same approach to fight other cancers.
Read the original story here.
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