London: In a major breakthrough, an Indian-origin scientist-led team has discovered a molecule which it claims can block the development and spread of breast cancer.Prof Shankar Balasubramanian and colleagues at Cancer Research UK`s Cambridge Research Institute says the naturally occurring molecule -- thiostrepton -- "clamps" on to a cancer-causing protein called FOXM1, preventing it from working.The scientists say that one of the main challenges is to stop the cancer before it spreads to other parts of the body, making it far harder to treat. But, they now hope that a drug could be developed to mimic the molecule, which was first discovered in bacteria, a newspaper reported.In fact, according to the scientists, breast cancer cells show increased levels of FOXM1. It attaches to certain areas of DNA and turns on genes which regulate the growth and division of cells, producing tumours.
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