AJTR Copyright © 2009-All rights reserved. Published by e-Century Publishing Corporation, Madison, WI 53711
Am J Transl Res 2009;1(4):326-340

Review Article
14-3-3σ, the double-edged sword of human cancers

Zhaomin Li, Jingyuan Liu, and Jian-Ting Zhang

Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology and IU Simon Cancer Center, Indiana University
School of Medicine, Indianapolis, IN 46202., USA

Received May 28, 2009; accepted June 2, 2009; available online June 8, 2009

Abstract: 14-3-3σ is a member of a highly conserved family of 14-3-3 proteins that are present in all eukaryotic
organisms. 14-3-3σ has been considered as a tumor suppressor with reduced expression in some human
cancers while its increased expression causes resistance to anticancer agents and radiation that cause DNA
damages. The increased expression of 14-3-3σ may also predict poor prognosis in some human cancers. Thus,
14-3-3σ may play an important role as a double-edged sword in human cancers, which may attribute to its
property as a molecular chaperone by binding to various protein ligands important to many cellular processes
such as cell cycle checkpoint regulation and apoptosis in response to DNA damages. In this article, we will
review recent studies and progresses in understanding 14-3-3σ as a double-edged sword in human cancers.

Key words: 14-3-3σ, tumorigenesis, metastasis, prognosis, drug resistance, expression regulation

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Address all correspondence to:
Jian-Ting Zhang, PhD
IUSCC, Indiana University School of Medicine
980 W. Walnut Street, R3-C510, Indianapolis, IN 46202
Tel (317) 278-4503
Fax (317) 274-8046