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Cell Mol Life Sci. 2010 Nov;67(21):3589-608. doi: 10.1007/s00018-010-0486-4. Epub 2010 Aug 13.

Understanding different functions of mammalian AP endonuclease (APE1) as a promising tool for cancer treatment.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Sciences and Technologies, University of Udine, Piazzale Kolbe 4, 33100, Udine, Italy.


The apurinic endonuclease 1/redox factor-1 (APE1) has a crucial function in DNA repair and in redox signaling in mammals, and recent studies identify it as an excellent target for sensitizing tumor cells to chemotherapy. APE1 is an essential enzyme in the base excision repair pathway of DNA lesions caused by oxidation and alkylation. As importantly, APE1 also functions as a redox agent maintaining transcription factors involved in cancer promotion and progression in an active reduced state. Very recently, a new unsuspected function of APE1 in RNA metabolism was discovered, opening new perspectives for this multifunctional protein. These observations underline the necessity to understand the molecular mechanisms responsible for fine-tuning its different biological functions. This survey intends to give an overview of the multifunctional roles of APE1 and their regulation in the context of considering this protein a promising tool for anticancer therapy.

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