Cytoskeletal Control and Wnt Signaling—APC’s Dual Contributions in Stem Cell Division and Colorectal Cancer

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Abstract

Intestinal epithelium architecture is sustained by stem cell division. In principle, stem cells can divide symmetrically to generate two identical copies of themselves or asymmetrically to sustain tissue renewal in a balanced manner. The choice between the two helps preserve stem cell and progeny pools and is crucial for tissue homeostasis. Control of spindle orientation is a prime contributor to the specification of symmetric versus asymmetric cell division. Competition for space within the niche may be another factor limiting the stem cell pool. An integrative view of the multiple links between intracellular and extracellular signals and molecular determinants at play remains a challenge. One outstanding question is the precise molecular roles of the tumour suppressor Adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) for sustaining gut homeostasis through its respective functions as a cytoskeletal hub and a down regulator in Wnt signalling. Here, we review our current understanding of APC inherent activities and partners in order to explore novel avenues by which APC may act as a gatekeeper in colorectal cancer and as a therapeutic target.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3811
Number of pages21
JournalCancers
Volume12
Early online date17 Dec 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Dec 2020

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