The tumor suppressor gene TP53 (p53) is the most extensively studied gene involved in human cancers. More than 1,400 publications have reported mutations of this gene in 150 cancer types for a total of 14,971 mutations. To exploit this huge bulk of data, specific analytic tools were highly warranted. We therefore developed a locus-specific database software called UMD-p53. This database compiles all somatic and germline mutations as well as polymorphisms of the TP53 gene which have been reported in the published literature since 1989, or unpublished data submitted to the database curators. The database is available at www.umd.necker.fr or at http://p53.curie.fr/. In this paper, we describe recent developments of the UMD-p53 database. These developments include new fields and routines. For example, the analysis of putative acceptor or donor splice sites is now automated and gives new insight for the causal role of "silent mutations." Other routines have also been created such as the prescreening module, the UV module, and the cancer distribution module. These new improvements will help users not only for molecular epidemiology and pharmacogenetic studies but also for patient-based studies. To achieve theses purposes we have designed a procedure to check and validate data in order to reach the highest quality data.
Copyright 2003 Wiley-Liss, Inc.