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Telomerase Components in Cell Signaling

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The extended growth potential of cancer cells is critically dependent upon the maintenance of functional telomeres, which are specialized chromosomal DNA-protein structures in the terminal regions of eukaryotic chromosomes (Ref.1). In order to divide, a normal cell has to replicate the entire DNA in its chromosomes. But normal cells have difficulty in copying the last few bases on the telomere. As a result, the telomere shortens with each round of DNA replication and cell division and as a cell ages, the telomere keeps shortening until it reaches a finite length. At that point cells stop dividing and this halt in growth is triggered by a gene p53 that is activated in response to DNA damage. A telomere that becomes too short no [...]


1.Telomerase extracurricular activities.
Chang S, DePinho RA.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2002 Oct 1; 99(20): 12520-2.
2.Regulation of telomerase activity and anti-apoptotic function by protein-protein interaction and phosphorylation.
Haendeler J, Hoffmann J, Rahman S, Zeiher AM, Dimmeler S.
FEBS Lett. 2003 Feb 11; 536(1-3): 180-6.
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