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Electrostatic Contributions to Carcinogenesis

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DOI: 10.4236/ojbiphy.2020.101003    44 Downloads   111 Views

ABSTRACT

Nanoscale electrostatics plays important roles in aster (spindle) assembly and motion, nuclear envelope breakdown and reassembly, and in force generation at kinetochores, poles, and chromosome arms for prometaphase, metaphase, and anaphase—A chromosome motions during mitosis. A large body of experimental evidence also suggests a role for electrostatics as the trigger for mitosis, which is considered here particularly in the context of cancer. Cancer cells are characterized by impaired intercellular electrical communication and adhesive contact as well as a loss of contact inhibition, conditions associated with increased cell surface negativity relative to their normal counterparts. Dividing cells have also been associated with lower transmembrane potentials and altered intracellular ionic concentrations. Here we propose that cancer cells are distinguished by abnormal trans- and intramembrane electric potentials, leading to the loss of active Na+/K+ plasma membrane pumping, increased intracellular concentrations of sodium and other ions, and alkaline nucleo-cytoplasmic pH, all of which are associated with and integral to carcinogenesis.

Cite this paper

Gagliardi, L. and Shain, D. (2020) Electrostatic Contributions to Carcinogenesis. Open Journal of Biophysics, 10, 27-45. doi: 10.4236/ojbiphy.2020.101003.

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