The Li-Fraumeni syndrome

Biochimie. 2002 Jan;84(1):75-82. doi: 10.1016/s0300-9084(01)01361-x.


Li-Fraumeni syndrome (LFS) has been the most common terminology used for the syndrome. It is a rare familial dominantly inherited cancer syndrome characterized by a wide spectrum of neoplasms occurring in children and young adults. The canonical definition of LFS includes a proband diagnosed with sarcoma before 45 years of age, a first-degree relative with cancer before this same age and another first- or second-degree relative in the lineage with any cancer before this age or sarcoma at any age. Multiple studies have reported p53 germline mutations in LFS families in various parts of the world. As in sporadic tumors, loss of heterozygosity leading to the inactivation of the wild-type allele by deletion or mutation is observed in LFS tumors. Cancer-risk in mutation carriers has been estimated to be 73% in males and nearly 100% in females, the difference almost entirely explained by breast cancer. The identification of germline p53 mutations in rare cancer-prone families has given rise to the medical, counseling, psychological and ethical problems.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Female
  • Fibroblasts
  • Genotype
  • Germ-Line Mutation
  • Heterozygote
  • Humans
  • Li-Fraumeni Syndrome / genetics*
  • Lymphocytes
  • Male
  • Phenotype
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53 / genetics*


  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53