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Tau mutations serve as a novel risk factor for cancer

Giacomina, R., Redaelli, V., Contiero, P., Fabiano, S., Tagliabue, G., Perego, P., Benussi, L., Bruni, A., Filippini, G., Farinotti, M., Giaccone, G., Buitatiotis, S., Manzoni, C., Ferrari, R. and Tagliavini, F. (2018) Tau mutations serve as a novel risk factor for cancer. Cancer Research, 78 (13). pp. 3731-3739. ISSN 0008-5472

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-17-3175

Abstract/Summary

In addition to its well-recognized role in neurodegeneration, tau participates in maintenance of genome stability and chromosome integrity. In particular, peripheral cells from patients affected by frontotemporal lobar degeneration carrying a mutation in tau gene (genetic tauopathies), as well as cells from animal models, show chromosome numerical and structural aberrations, chromatin anomalies, and a propensity toward abnormal recombination. As genome instability is tightly linked to cancer development, we hypothesized that mutated tau may be a susceptibility factor for cancer. Here we conducted a retrospective cohort study comparing cancer incidence in families affected by genetic tauopathies to control families. Additionally, we carried out a bioinformatics analysis to highlight pathways associated with the tau protein interactome. We report that the risk of developing cancer is significantly higher in families affected by genetic tauopathies, and a high proportion of tau protein interactors are involved in cellular processes particularly relevant to cancer. These findings disclose a novel role of tau as a risk factor for cancer, providing new insights in the various pathological roles of mutated tau.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Chemistry, Food and Pharmacy > School of Pharmacy > Division of Pharmacology
ID Code:77726
Publisher:American Association for Cancer Research

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