From New Scientist we bring you the story of new method of fighting cancer:
Ingredients of an organic crop spray designed to keep damaging insects at bay could be turned against cancer. Farmers have been using Bt sprays, which contain toxic proteins from the bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis, to kill pests for the past 40 years. But now the killing power of the toxins is to be tested against human cancer cells.
The Cry1 Bt toxin kills some insects by destroying certain types of gut cell. But David Ellar and his colleagues at the University of Cambridge hope to make the toxins target other cells by attaching the active part of the toxin to variants of human antibodies, forming a library of hybrid molecules called crybodies.
“In effect, we can have 100 billion different toxins,” says Ellar, who presented his plans at the annual meeting of the UK Society for General Microbiology in Keele.
The next step is to screen each crybody against a range of cells in the lab, including cancer cells from humans and animals.
More from the laboratory of Dr. David Ellar…