An end to division


A new cancer treatment more potent than the best-selling cancer drug taxol is working well in human trials. Epothilone, which comes from soil-dwelling organisms called myxobacteria, stops cancer cells dividing as taxol does. When a cell splits in two, elastic protein threads draw the chromosomes apart. But epothilone binds to these “tubulins” and halts a tumour’s runaway cell division. “Epothilone stops the chromosomes from being pulled apart,
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