Cancer treatment could be aided by a new scientific report which made key discoveries about cell proteins.
Scientists at the University of Edinburgh used high-resolution microscopy to view the cell replication process in 3D and observed how one protein was the trigger for two enzymes that are fundamental to cancer cell division.
"The greater our understanding of the proteins that control cell division, the better equipped scientists will be to design more effective treatments against cancer," said Dr Mar Carmena from the educational establishment's School of Biological Sciences.
Scientists hope the work can be used to develop further anti-mitotic drugs – those which halt the spread of tumours - in the future, as well as limit the side effects of chemotherapy.
Cancer Research UK states that death rates in the UK have fallen by a fifth over the past three decades and by nine per cent in the last ten years. However, cancer is still responsible for one in four deaths in the country.