The p53 Pathway as a Target in Cancer Therapeutics: Obstacles and Promise

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Science Translational Medicine  05 Jan 2011:
Vol. 3, Issue 64, pp. 64rv1
DOI: 10.1126/scitranslmed.3001366

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A large fraction of human tumors carry p53 mutations, which allow tumor initiation and progression; furthermore, it is now clear that restoration or reactivation of wild-type p53 function prompts rapid elimination of tumors. The discovery and design of compounds that reactivate or enhance the p53 pathway has resulted in the identification of promising drug candidates that have now entered clinical trials for anticancer strategies. However, some of these agents appear to elicit undesirable toxic effects on normal cells and tissues and therefore are restricted in the dose that can be applied in tumors. In this Review, we discuss the concerns about and promise of these p53 activators and propose ways to expand and optimize screening strategies to identify such molecules.


  • Citation: A. Mandinova, S. W. Lee, The p53 Pathway as a Target in Cancer Therapeutics: Obstacles and Promise. Sci. Transl. Med. 3, 64rv1 (2011).

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