A Wellesley College professor and her students have discovered a new cancer-fighting chemical compound that targets pancreatic cancer cells, according to a press release posted on the school’s website.
Dora Carrico-Moniz, assistant professor of chemistry, set out in 2006 to investigate a compound called angelmarin that comes from the root of a Japanese medical plant. With her students, she began making the compound artificially in her lab.
Recently, Carrico-Moniz and her team discovered a new compound, which targets cancer cells specifically, as opposed to most cancer drugs, which damage both normal cells and cancer cells.
The indiscriminate nature of most cancer drugs is what causes the hair loss and painful side effects for people in treatment.
The team published the discovery in the journal Bioorganic & Medicinal Chemistry Letters.
Alumnae Tehsina Devji ’11, Claire Reddy ’09, and Christina Woo ’08 were the lead authors.
Students Maria Jun ’14, Alyssa Bacay ’14, and Julia Solomon ’13 are following up in collaboration with Professor Andrew Webb.
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