p53 ancestry: gazing through an evolutionary lens

Nat Rev Cancer. 2009 Oct;9(10):758-62. doi: 10.1038/nrc2732.

Abstract

Evolutionary patterns indicate that primordial p53 genes predated the appearance of cancer. Therefore, wild-type tumour suppressive functions and mutant oncogenic functions that give celebrity status to this gene family were probably co-opted from unrelated primordial activities. Is it possible to deduce what these early functions might have been? And might this knowledge provide a platform for therapeutic opportunities?

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Evolution, Molecular*
  • Genes, p53 / genetics*
  • Humans
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53 / genetics*

Substances

  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53