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Oncogenesis. 2016 Feb 15;5:e196. doi: 10.1038/oncsis.2016.8.

Gain of function of mutant p53: R282W on the peak?

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State Key Laboratory for Oncogenes and Related Genes, Key Laboratory of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, Ministry of Health, Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Renji Hospital, School of Medicine, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Shanghai Cancer Institute, Shanghai Institute of Digestive Disease, Shanghai, China.
Faculty of Medicine, Catholic University Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.


Mutant p53 proteins commonly lose their tumor suppression function and gain novel oncogenic functions (gain of function (GOF)). Different p53 mutations are often considered in one class in biological and clinical studies. However, recent studies have revealed that p53 mutations are biologically and clinically distinct. The R282W mutant associates with earlier onset of familial cancers and poorer outcome of cancer patients, suggesting a more prominent GOF effect of this specific mutant. Here we discuss our current understanding on the multifaceted effects of R282W mutation, including its structural features, signaling pathways and clinical implications. The destabilizing nature, aggregation proneness, altered transcriptome and interactome may collaboratively contribute to the unique phenotype of R282W mutation. The quest for mechanistic insights into the unique GOF effects of R282W mutation would further our understanding of the biology of mutant proteins in cancers, and enforce the development of more effective targeted therapies.

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