Targeting oncogenic Myc as a strategy for cancer treatment

Signal Transduct Target Ther. 2018 Feb 23;3:5. doi: 10.1038/s41392-018-0008-7. eCollection 2018.


The MYC family oncogene is deregulated in >50% of human cancers, and this deregulation is frequently associated with poor prognosis and unfavorable patient survival. Myc has a central role in almost every aspect of the oncogenic process, orchestrating proliferation, apoptosis, differentiation, and metabolism. Although Myc inhibition would be a powerful approach for the treatment of many types of cancers, direct targeting of Myc has been a challenge for decades owing to its "undruggable" protein structure. Hence, alternatives to Myc blockade have been widely explored to achieve desirable anti-tumor effects, including Myc/Max complex disruption, MYC transcription and/or translation inhibition, and Myc destabilization as well as the synthetic lethality associated with Myc overexpression. In this review, we summarize the latest advances in targeting oncogenic Myc, particularly for cancer therapeutic purposes.

Publication types

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