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Expert Opin Ther Targets. 2013 Nov;17(11):1263-73. doi: 10.1517/14728222.2013.828037. Epub 2013 Aug 19.

Targeting Cdc42 in cancer.

Author information

  • 1Cancer Biology Program, Fox Chase Cancer Center , Philadelphia, PA , USA +1 215 728 5319 ; +1 215 728 3616 ; Jonathan.Chernoff@fccc.edu.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

The Rho GTPases are a family of proteins that control fundamental cellular processes in response to extracellular stimuli and internal programs. Rho GTPases function as molecular switches in which the GTP-bound proteins are active and GDP-bound proteins are inactive. This article will focus on one Rho family member, Cdc42, which is overexpressed in a number of human cancers, and which might provide new therapeutic targets in malignancies.

AREAS COVERED:

In this article, the key regulators and effectors of Cdc42 and their molecular alterations are described. The complex interactions between the signaling cascades regulated by Cdc42 are also analyzed.

EXPERT OPINION:

While mutations in Cdc42 have not been reported in human cancer, aberrant expression of Cdc42 has been reported in a variety of tumor types and in some instances has been correlated with poor prognosis. Recently, it has been shown that Cdc42 activation by oncogenic Ras is crucial for Ras-mediated tumorigenesis, suggesting that targeting Cdc42 or its effectors might be useful in tumors harboring activating Ras mutations.

PMID:
23957315
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3937847
Free PMC Article
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