Insights from a rare genetic disease may help treat multiple myeloma

A new class of drugs for blood cancers such as leukemia and multiple myeloma is showing promise. But it is hobbled by a problem that also plagues other cancer drugs: targeted cells can develop resistance. Now scientists have found that insights into a rare genetic disease known as NGLY1 deficiency could help scientists understand how that resistance works — and potentially how drugs can outsmart it.

A protein called Nrf1 (shown in white in these mouse cells) can hamper promising drugs for blood cancers, but now researchers have found a possible workaround to shut Nrf1 down.
Credit: The American Chemical Society

A new class of drugs for blood cancers such as leukemia and multiple myeloma is showing promise. But it is hobbled by a problem that also plagues other cancer drugs: targeted cells can develop resistance. Now scientists, reporting in ACS Central Science, have found that insights into a rare genetic disease known as NGLY1 deficiency could help scientists understand how that resistance works — and potentially how drugs can outsmart it.

A class of compounds called proteasome inhibitors that include bortezomib and carfilzomib — both approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration — have been effective at treating certain types of blood cancers. The drugs work by jamming some of cancer cells’ machinery to induce cell death. But the drugs have been limited by cancer cells ability to development resistance, as well as the inhibitors inability to fight solid tumors effectively. Studies have suggested that resistance could be linked to a protein called Nrf1. When proteasome inhibitors go into action, Nrf1 is spurred into overdrive to restore the cells’ normal activities and keep them alive. If researchers could figure out how to block Nrf1, they might be able to address the resistance problem. Carolyn Bertozzi and colleagues, through studying NGLY1 deficiency, a seemingly unrelated condition, may have hit upon an approach to do this.

The researchers were investigating how lacking the enzyme NGLY1 causes a host of debilitating symptoms. They found that NGLY1 is responsible for activating Nrf1, the protein that is suspected of weakening proteasome inhibitors’ effectiveness against cancer. Further testing showed that dampening NGLY1 allowed a proteasome inhibitor to continue doing its work killing cancer cells without interference from Nrf1. This finding, the authors note, holds great promise for the development of combination therapeutics for blood cancers in the future.

[“Source-sciencedaily”]

Got an iPhone 6 Plus with ‘Touch Disease’? Apple Launches Program to Help Fix That

If you need the iPhone 6 Plus touch disease fix, Apple has launched a program to help owners of the devices find help for this frustrating defect.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) recently acknowledged that some iPhone 6 Plus devices may actually exhibit ‘Touch Disease’ symptoms, and has rolled out a program to help fix the “disease.”

The term ‘Touch Disease’ was coined on the internet to refer to the display flickering or Multi-Touch issues that surface after the iPhone 6 Plus undergoes stress, such as being bent several times or dropped on a hard surface.

Many iPhone 6 Plus users have in fact complained that the touchscreen will stop working entirely for several months. The issue reportedly stems from faulty chips inside the devices, according to repair site iFixit. When the iPhone 6 Plus is dropped or bent, the chips become loose.

Now, the California-based tech company has said it will repair affected iPhone 6 Plus devices for a service fee of $149 — as long as your screen isn’t cracked or broken, and the phone is in working order.

Although some iPhone 6 users have also reported the issue, Apple’s new ‘Touch Disease’ repair service, (officially named Multi-Touch Repair Program) only applies to the larger-sized iPhone 6 Plus for now.

Apple’s Multi-Touch Repair Program

According to the Support team on Apple’s official website, you must choose one of the following options prior to any service to verify that your iPhone 6 Plus is eligible for this program, and is in working order:

  • Apple Authorized Service Provider – Find one here.
  • Apple Retail Store – Make an appointment here.
  • Apple Technical Support – Contact us.

Once your device is cleared for repair, you are advised to back up your data to iTunes or iCloud before taking it to an Apple Authorized Service Provider for the repair service.

Apple added on its website that it will also reach out to iPhone 6 Plus users who may have already paid for a service repair related to this ‘Touch Disease’ issue, either through Apple or an Apple Authorized Service Provider to arrange reimbursement.

“The reimbursement amount will equal the difference between the price you paid for the original service to your iPhone 6 Plus and the $149 service price,” Apple wrote.

Apple’s Multi-Touch Repair Program covers affected iPhone 6 Plus devices worldwide for 5 years after the first retail sale of the unit, added the tech company.

Image: Apple

[“source-smallbiztrends”]