Investigators have identified a mechanism that’s blocked during melanoma metastasis but can be restored in mice by adding the sugar fucose to the diet (Lau E et al. Sci Signal. 2015;8:ra124).
Led by researchers at the Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute in La Jolla, California, the team found that activating transcription factor 2 (ATF2), which is abundant in advanced stages of melanoma, blunts expression of the gene encoding fucokinase (FUK), an enzyme that attaches fucose to target molecules. The findings suggest FUK repression promotes melanoma motility and invasiveness in vitro.
Hampton T. Dietary Fucose Helps Attenuate Metastatic Melanoma in Mice. JAMA. 2016;315(5):455. doi:10.1001/jama.2015.19343