Arginine methyltransferases as novel therapeutic targets for breast cancer

Mutagenesis. 2015 Mar;30(2):177-89. doi: 10.1093/mutage/geu039.


Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed female cancer in the world. Though therapeutic treatments are available to treat breast cancer and in some instances are successful, the occurrence of unsuccessful treatment, or the rate of tumour recurrence, still remains strikingly high. Therefore, novel therapeutic treatment targets need to be discovered and tested. The protein arginine methyltransferases (PRMTs) are a family of enzymes that catalyse arginine methylation and are implicated in a myriad of cellular pathways including transcription, DNA repair, RNA metabolism, signal transduction, protein-protein interactions and subcellular localisation. In breast cancer, the expression levels and enzymatic activity of a number of PRMTs is dysregulated; significantly altering the regulation of many cellular pathways that are implicated in breast cancer development and progression. Here, we review the current knowledge on PRMTs in breast cancer and provide a rationale for how PRMTs may provide novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of breast cancer.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Breast Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Breast Neoplasms / enzymology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Protein-Arginine N-Methyltransferases / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Protein-Arginine N-Methyltransferases / physiology


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Protein-Arginine N-Methyltransferases