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Nucl Recept Signal. 2007 Aug 3;5:e006.

Steroid receptor RNA activator (SRA1): unusual bifaceted gene products with suspected relevance to breast cancer.

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Department of Biochemistry and Medical Genetics, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.


The steroid receptor RNA activator (SRA) is a unique modulator of steroid receptor transcriptional activity, as it is able to mediate its coregulatory effects as a RNA molecule. Recent findings, however, have painted a more complex picture of the SRA gene (SRA1) products. Indeed, even though SRA was initially thought to be noncoding, several RNA isoforms have now been found to encode an endogenous protein (SRAP), which is well conserved among Chordata. Although the function of SRAP remains largely unknown, it has been proposed that, much like its corresponding RNA, the protein itself might regulate estrogen and androgen receptor signaling pathways. As such, data suggest that both SRA and SRAP might participate in the mechanisms underlying breast, as well as prostate tumorigenesis. This review summarizes the published literature dealing with these two faces of the SRA gene products and underscores the relevance of this bifaceted system to breast cancer development.

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