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p53 in cancer: A paradigm for modern management of cancer

Authors
Journal
The Surgeon
1479-666X
Publisher
Elsevier
Publication Date
Volume
3
Issue
3
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/s1479-666x(05)80041-1
Disciplines
  • Biology
  • Medicine

Abstract

The p53 tumour suppressor gene is thought to be central in protecting against the development of cancer, and this article reviews current understanding of its function and potential clinical significance. Information for this review was obtained from previous review articles, references cited in original papers, a Pubmed search of the last twelve months' literature and by scanning the latest issues of relevant journals. P53 can be described as a stress response gene, its product (the p53 protein) acting to induce apoptosis or cell-cycle arrest in response to DNA damage, thereby maintaining genetic stability in the organism. These functions are realised by a series of steps known as the “p53 pathway” involving induction of the expression of a number of other genes. As p53 is the most commonly mutated gene in human cancer, it has attracted a great deal of interest in the areas of prognosis, diagnosis and therapy, and p53 gene therapy is becoming established as a useful adjunct to conventional cancer treatment

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