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Front Biosci (Landmark Ed). 2011 Jun 1;16:2561-71.

Role of Rho GTPases and their regulators in cancer progression.

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Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Stanley Scott Cancer Center, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA.


Rho family of GTPases is an ubiquitiously expressed and evolutionarily conserved family of GTP binding proteins that regulate actin dynamics and intracellular signaling. Among the Rho family GTPases, three members RhoA, Rac1 and CDC42 have been well characterized. They each play pivotal roles in gene expression, cell proliferation, apoptosis and various cellular functions. They are driven by signaling from RhoGDIs, RhoGEFs, RhoGAPs and cell surface receptors. Abnormalities in Rho GTPase function have major consequences on cell behavior. Over expression of Rho GTPases is associated with reorganization of actin cytoskeleton, an increase in cell migration, invasion and metastasis which are important aspects of cancer progression. This review will explore these Rho GTPases and the function of their associated signaling pathways in different types of cancers.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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