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Semin Cancer Biol. 2003 Feb;13(1):83-9.

The von Hippel-Lindau tumor suppressor, hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF-1) degradation, and cancer pathogenesis.

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  • 1Oxygen-sensing Group, Henry Wellcome Building for Genomic Medicine, University of Oxford, Roosevelt Drive, Headington, Oxford OX3 7BN, UK. cpugh@well.ox.ac.uk


Recently, work on the mechanism of action of the von Hippel-Lindau tumour suppressor protein (pVHL) and studies on hypoxic gene regulation have converged, providing insights into both cellular oxygen sensing and cancer pathogenesis. pVHL is the recognition component of the E3-ubiquitin ligase complex involved in the degradation of hypoxia-inducible factor-1 (HIF) alpha-subunits, a process regulated by oxygen availability and blocked by disease causing pVHL mutations. In normoxic cells, pVHL targeting of HIF-alpha subunits follows hydroxylation of critical HIF prolyl residues by a group of oxygen, 2-oxoglutarate- and iron-dependent enzymes. In this review, we outline current understanding of HIF/pVHL/prolyl hydroxylase pathway and consider the implications for VHL-associated cancer.

Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd.

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