1. Pharmacological and nutritional targeting of voltage-gated sodium channels in the treatment of cancers
Voltage-gated sodium channels (NaV) are plasma membrane ion channels that physiological activity is critical for cellular electricity and the functioning of cells characterized as being “excitable”, such as neurons, muscle or cardiac cells. However, it appeared that these proteins are aberrantly expressed in cancer tissues and cells from different tissue origins such as in breast, lung, prostate, colon, cervix cancers, while they are not expressed in cognate non-cancer tissues. We have demonstrated that the expression and function of these ion channels in cancer cells are associated with invasive properties, with the progression towards metastatic stages and with patients’ death.
In collaboration with international partners, and in the context of Le Studium Consortium, we develop a project joining concepts and techniques from cell biology, physiology, biophysics, medicinal chemistry, anaesthesia, surgery and oncology. This project aims at developing a better understanding of molecular mechanisms by which NaV channels are involved in carcinogenesis and metastatic progression, and at proposing NaV as new pharmacological and nutritional targets for anticancer treatments.