Worldwide Cancer Research Menu

How do molecules switch from being anti-cancer to being able to encourage it?

  • Researcher: Professor Karen Vousden
  • Institution: Beatson Institute for Cancer Research,
  • Award Amount: £185,899 for 3 years from June 2011
  • Cancer Type: General Cancer Research
How do molecules switch from being anti-cancer to being able to encourage it?

Professor Vousden's research focuses on a protein called p53 which has a key role in the body's defence against cancer. p53 causes cells to stop growing or die in response to damage to their DNA. This built-in control mechanism prevents damaged cells from going on to cause cancer. In some cells however the p53 protein can become altered or turned off. This is the case in most cancer cells and is at the heart of why many cells become cancerous. With her Worldwide Cancer Research grant Professor Vousden is investigating altered forms of the p53 protein which have lost their ability to prevent cancer and how, instead, they are able to develop cancer-causing attributes, including helping cells to invade surrounding tissues and spread around the body. Since the altered forms of p53 are only found in cancer cells they could be a potential target for drugs as they would only affect these cells and not the healthy ones.

Showing: All projects

The Research That Is Happening Right Now

Explore current projects to see how far-reaching our research is from a global perspective.

Projects per page: 31020

Our Impact

See the difference our research projects make.

Our philosophy is very simple: if we believe a project can make a difference in the fight against cancer then we will award a grant to make it happen. We’re not interested in national borders or any kind of geographical bias, just the most promising proposals. And that’s the very reason we ask t...
Read more
Life in the Lab
Supporters often ask us what type of projects their donations are funding. What does a typical day in the life of a cancer researcher look like? To answer these questions and give you an insight into the vital work your support helps us to fund, we've put together this short video....
Read more