The Bone Cancer Research Trust has awarded a pioneering new research project which aims to utilise RNA technology, which has been used to develop a COVID-19 vaccination, to develop a treatment for osteosarcoma patients.
This new pioneering research project has been awarded to Dr Darrell Green from the University of East Anglia. Dr Green will aim to restore a gene called TP53 which is vital in stopping the progression of osteosarcoma, by utilising RNA technology, similar to that used to develop a COVID-19 vaccine.
The major mutation observed in osteosarcoma affects a gene called TP53. TP53 loss has been identified in over 80% of osteosarcomas and is followed by massive genome instability, leading to the further development and progression of tumours.
A protein called P53, which is encoded by the TP53 gene, helps repair mutations. Alterations in TP53 make the protein P53 inactive and therefore unable to carry out its role.
The researchers aim to restore TP53 and P53 function by utilising RNA technology and then evaluate if this restoration results in osteosarcoma cell death.
If successful, this highly innovative research project could benefit osteosarcoma patients by offering a completely new way of treating the disease.
This type of approach has the potential to reach beyond osteosarcoma, as it could be adapted to target different genes affecting other forms of primary bone cancer.
To read more about the project, please click below.