Wnt signaling as a therapeutic target for cancer

Methods Mol Biol. 2007;361:63-91. doi: 10.1385/1-59745-208-4:63.


The Wnt/beta-catenin signaling pathway is tightly regulated and has important functions in development, tissue homeostasis, and regeneration. Deregulation of Wnt/beta-catenin signaling is frequently found in various human cancers. Eighty percent of colorectal cancers alone reveal activation of this pathway by either inactivation of the tumor-suppressor gene adenomatous polyposis coli or mutation of the proto-oncogene beta-catenin. Activation of Wnt/beta-catenin signaling has been found to be important for both initiation and progression of cancers of different tissues. Therefore, targeted inhibition of Wnt/beta-catenin signaling is a rational and promising new approach for the therapy of cancers of various origins.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli / drug therapy
  • Adenomatous Polyposis Coli / metabolism*
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology
  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic* / drug effects
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic* / genetics
  • Humans
  • Mutation
  • Signal Transduction* / drug effects
  • Signal Transduction* / genetics
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins / genetics
  • Wnt Proteins / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Wnt Proteins / genetics
  • Wnt Proteins / metabolism*
  • beta Catenin / antagonists & inhibitors
  • beta Catenin / genetics
  • beta Catenin / metabolism*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Tumor Suppressor Proteins
  • Wnt Proteins
  • beta Catenin