Mutation spectra resulting from carcinogenic exposure: from model systems to cancer-related genes

Recent Results Cancer Res. 1998;154:97-124. doi: 10.1007/978-3-642-46870-4_6.


The events leading to cancer are complex and interactive. Alteration of cancer genes, such as the tumor suppressor gene p53, plays a central role in this process. Analysis of the frequency, type and site of mutations in important cancer-related genes may provide clues to the identification of etiological factors and sources of exposure. In this chapter we have selected a few examples of environmental human carcinogens and have attempted to use the knowledge of their mechanisms of mutagenesis, as derived from in vitro cell systems, as a key to understanding the complexity of p53 mutation spectra in tumors arising at the putative target organ. The analysis will focus on environmental exposure to UV radiation. The examples of tobacco smoke, dietary aflatoxin and vinyl chloride will be also briefly discussed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aflatoxin B1 / toxicity
  • Carcinogens / toxicity*
  • Genes, p53*
  • Humans
  • Mutation*
  • Plants, Toxic
  • Smoke / adverse effects
  • Tobacco
  • Ultraviolet Rays
  • Vinyl Chloride / toxicity


  • Carcinogens
  • Smoke
  • Aflatoxin B1
  • Vinyl Chloride