Epigenetic regulators are emerging therapeutic targets in a wide variety of human cancers. BET bromodomain proteins have been identified as key regulators of oncogenic transcription factors including MYC; therefore, their inhibition might provide a way to block these "undruggable" targets. Several BET bromodomain inhibitors are in clinical development with promising preliminary findings. However, tumors acquire resistance to these agents in several different ways. In this review, we summarize the role that BET bromodomain proteins play in tumorigenesis as well as the molecular mechanisms underlying therapeutic responses and resistance to their inhibition with emphasis on BRD4 and breast cancer.
© 2016 Shu and Polyak; Published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press.