Caitlin Miron, a PHD student from Queen’s University n Ontario, Canada has made a significant discovery. The chemistry student managed to find a chemical component which can make cancer cells switch off and thus not spread any further.
The PHD student dedicated her time spent at the European Institute of Chemistry and Biology from Bordeaux, France, to examine component she identified at the Petitjean lab at Queen’s University. The student was able to study the component using an advanced screening technology and during her internship, she discovered that the component binds to four-stranded DNA structure, known as the guanine quadruplex. This component has been previously linked with cancer and other diseases.
How she made the discovery
Miron explained that she made the discovery when she was comparing a single-stranded DNS to a necklace of beads which move until they stumble upon a knot. According to her, the discovery is that glue holding together the knot, the superglue to stop cancer cells from spreading. This means that scientist could potentially prevent cancer cells from reaching a particular section of the DNA, so as to stop the growth and spread of the cells.
Quadruplex binders have been studied for a long time
Quadruplex binders have been in the attention of scientists for over 30 years and the results were not as positive, until this PHD student stumbled upon this major discovery. Miron and her research team filled a patent for this discovery and a formal patent could be ready in one more year. Miron hopes that in five to eight year this compound will be used commercially to help cancer patients.
The PHD student was awarded by Mitacs an award for Outstanding Innovation. The Canadian not-for-profit organization decided to honor Miron with a ceremony in Ottawa.