CML, chronic myelogenous leukemia, is a blood cancer that develops when the causative protein BCR-ABL appears in cells. TKIs, molecular targeted drugs that suppress the tyrosine kinase activity of BCR-ABL, have been used for treatment of CML. However, the problem is that a successful drug response is not known until treatment is actually started and follow-up is conducted. We have developed "opto-diagnostics" to detect the activity of BCR-ABL, utilizing the principle of Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET), with the substrate CrkL of BCR-ABL. This makes it possible to analyze the drug sensitivity of CML cells collected from patients at the single-cell level, prior to the start of treatment.
Fluorescence bioimaging technology enables highly sensitive and
quantitative measurement of protein movement and
function in living cells.
Our goal is to apply this technology to clinical testing.