The diverse roles of Rac signaling in tumorigenesis
Volume 10, Issue 10
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May 15, 2011
Pages 1571 - 1581http://dx.doi.org/10.4161/cc.10.10.15612
Authors: Natalie A. Mack, Helen J. Whalley, Sonia Castillo-Lluva and Angeliki Malliri View affiliations
Rac is a member of the Rho family of small GTPases, which act as molecular switches to control a wide array of cellular functions. In particular, Rac signaling has been implicated in the control of cell-cell adhesions, cell-matrix adhesions, cell migration, cell cycle progression and cellular transformation. As a result of its functional diversity, Rac signaling can influence several aspects of tumorigenesis. Consistent with this, in vivo evidence that Rac signaling contributes to tumorigenesis is continuously emerging. Additionally, our understanding of the mechanisms by which Rac signaling is regulated is rapidly expanding and consequently adds to the complexity of how Rac signaling could be modulated during tumorigenesis. Here we review the numerous biological functions and regulatory mechanisms of Rac signaling and discuss how they could influence the different stages of tumorigenesis.