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Oncogene. 2000 Aug 31;19(37):4191-8.

Ras pathway signals are required for notch-mediated oncogenesis.

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Department of Genetics, Harvard Medical School, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, 200 Longwood Avenue, Boston, Massachusetts, MA 02115, USA.


The Notch genes of C. elegans, Drosophila melanogaster and vertebrates encode receptors responsible for cell fate decisions during development. These Notch receptors and their ligands, Delta and Jagged, have been implicated in several human diseases. Truncated, constitutively active mutant forms of the Notch receptor appear to be involved in human T-cell leukemia, mammary carcinomas in mice, and a tumorous germline phenotype in C. elegans. Since activated Notch induces solitary tumors in transgenic mice, it is highly likely that collaborating genetic events are required for tumor formation. We have assessed four signal transduction pathways to determine which might play additional roles in malignant transformation in concert with activated Notch4. Our results suggest that transformation by Notch does not, as might have been expected, depend on the Src-like kinases Lck and Fyn, nor upon signals from protein kinase A and C (PKA, PKC). Rather, transformation by Notch requires active signals from the Erk/MAP kinase and PI-3 kinase pathways downstream of Ras. Oncogene (2000) 19, 4191 - 4198.

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