Inhibition of Cancer Cells Expressing Activated Ras Gene by Reducing the Expression of Sprouty with RNA Interference or Similar Technologies




According to the CDC, cancer is the second leading cause of death in the U. S., killing more than 553,000 Americans each year. Control of this disease is a national priority. There are many mechanisms by which normal cells can be transformed into cancer cells. One that is well known and associated with a large number of cancers is mutation of the H-Ras gene into an activated oncogene. In particular, a large percentage of lung and pancreatic cancers express activated forms of H-Ras.


Description of Technology


This technology describes a potential approach for control of cancer cells that express a mutated form of the H-Ras oncogene. The specific invention is a unique interfering RNA (shRNA or siRNA) that reduces expression of the Sprouty protein (Spry2). In the presence of activated H-Ras, expression of the Sprouty protein may promote malignancy.


Key Benefits

  • Reduction of Sprouty protein: A specific small interfering RNA (shRNA or siRNA) that reduces the level of Sprouty protein in cancer cells expressing activated H-Ras.
  • Potential target for lung and pancreatic cancer: A large percentage of lung and pancreatic cancers, both of which are very difficult to treat, express activated H-Ras.




This invention could be developed alone or in combination with other chemotherapies for the treatment of cancers.


Patent Status


Issued Patent Number 7,645,871




Justin McCormick, Piro Lito


Tech ID




Alternative contact due to temporary leave:


Nina (Isi) Davis, Technology Marketing Manager, email:, phone (direct): (517)884-1829. 


Patent Information:

For Information, Contact:

Randy Ramharack
Technology Manager
Michigan State University