Using DNA science to control CML, Brian Druker

Interviewee: Brian Druker. Brian Druker talks about how the drug he designed targets the molecular cause of CML. (DNAi Location: Applications > Genes and medicine > Drug design > Brian Druker >Using DNA science to control disease)

None of what we do could be done without DNA science so the Gleevecâ„¢ targets a protein called BCR-ABL and this BCR-ABL protein belongs to a family of enzymes that regulate cell growth. It comes about because of 2 pieces of DNA exchanging segments. So it's a genetic disorder. It's something that people pick up, it's not inherited, it's something that people pick up in their bone marrows during their lifetime in one blood cell. Two pieces of DNA rearranged create this abnormal protein it's sort of like an accelerator of a car getting stuck on telling cells to grow continuously and they continue to grow and divide causing leukemia so it's directly related to DNA. What we've done, DNA as you know makes RNA makes protein and it's this protein that drives the growth of the leukemia cells. We shut down this protein, we shut down this leukemia and when these cells die the genetic abnormality in those cells goes away too.

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