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Our Solution

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Overview of Lykosa

 Lykosa is a biosynthetic liposomal construct that selectively targets and attacks pancreatic cancer cells by binding to the transmembrane, tumor-specific MUC-1 protein. Once it binds to this protein, Lykosa fuses with the cancer cell, delivering granzyme B, inducing apoptosis.

The Parts of Lykosa

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Legend:

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Liposome: transport vehicle for the enzymes, antibodies, and SNAREs 

Granzyme B: enzyme that cleaves caspases, inducing apoptosis

PEG: (polyethylene glycol) reduces interaction between the liposome and the patient’s immune system

MAb-C595 antibody: antibody that detect and binds to cancerous MUC-1 proteins on the pancreatic cancer cell

SNARE: (soluble-Nethylmaleimide sensitive factor accessory protein receptors) protein that aids in the process of membrane fusion 

The Mechanism of Lykosa

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Binding of Lykosa with the Pancreatic Cancer Cell

Lykosa floats through the body until it finds a cancer cell with the MUC-1 transmembrane protein. It then uses its MUC-1 antibody, Mab-C595, to bind to the cancer cell.

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Fusion of Membranes Between Lykosa and the Cancer Cell

With the aid of the SNARE proteins, Lykosa then pulls itself closer to the cancer cell. The SNAREs then help the two membranes overcome the activation energy that is required for the fusing of the two membranes, allowing Lykosa to fuse its membrane with that of the cancer cell.

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The Release of Granzyme B into the Cancer Cell

Once the membranes are fused, granzyme B is released into the cell. Granzyme B then travels towards the nucleus.

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Inducing Apoptosis of the Cancer Cell

After granzyme B reaches the nucleus, it indirectly cleaves caspases which forces the cell into apoptosis, successfully killing the cell.

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