University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center researcher Dr. Ellen Beswick has received a $1.7 million grant from the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health to continue studies into a protein that could be helpful in attacking cancers of the colon and rectum, one of the most common types of cancers worldwide, according to a release from the UNM center.
The release said Beswick has been studying a protein that helps bone marrow stem cells mature into different types of blood cells and flow into the bloodstream. She will use the five-year federal grant funding to study working with the protein on tumors to keep them from growing and to help immune cells attack them.
In tests she has done with the protein on mice, cancer tumors have shrunk. Though treatment for humans is still a long way off, Beswick believes this scientific research will help work toward that goal.
Beswick is an associate professor in the Department of Molecular Genetics & Microbiology at the UNM School of Medicine.