Factors affecting the nuclear localization of β-catenin in normal and malignant tissue

J Cell Biochem. 2014 Aug;115(8):1351-61. doi: 10.1002/jcb.24803.


The canonical Wnt signaling pathway has been the focus of intensive research because of its frequent dysregulation in human cancers. Much of this has been directed towards the aberrant expression and/or activity of the central mediator of this pathway, β-catenin. In particular, the nuclear localization of β-catenin and subsequent inappropriate activation of TCF/LEF-mediated transcription appears to be an important process in both the establishment and maintenance of cancer stem cells. Despite this, the exact mechanisms controlling β-catenin nuclear localization in both normal and malignant cells are poorly understood. This prospect article brings together the many mechanisms previously reported to regulate the nuclear localization of β-catenin and how they are relevant to cancer.


Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Cell Nucleus / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / genetics*
  • Neoplasms / pathology
  • Signal Transduction / genetics
  • TCF Transcription Factors / metabolism
  • Transcription, Genetic*
  • Wnt Signaling Pathway / genetics*
  • beta Catenin / biosynthesis*
  • beta Catenin / genetics


  • TCF Transcription Factors
  • beta Catenin