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J Mammary Gland Biol Neoplasia. 2001 Jan;6(1):37-52.

Wnt signaling and mammary tumorigenesis.

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CRC Centre for Cell and Molecular Biology, Institute of Cancer Research, London, United Kingdom.


Wnt expression patterns during mammary development support a role for Wnts in breast development and in mammary epithelial responses to systemic hormones. The deregulation of Wnt signaling also plays a role in breast cancer. Activation of the Wnt signaling pathway is a major feature of several human neoplasias and appears to lead to the cytosolic stabilization of a transcriptional co-factor, beta-catenin. This co-activator can then regulate transcription from a number of target genes including the cellular oncogenes cyclin D1 and c-myc. This review will summarize the current state of knowledge of Wnt signal transduction in a range of model systems and will then address the role of Wnts and Wnt signaling in mammary development and cancer.

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