What is the role of the APC gene (adenomatous polyposis gene) in the pathophysiology of colon cancer?

Updated: Apr 15, 2020
  • Author: Tomislav Dragovich, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: N Joseph Espat, MD, MS, FACS  more...
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Answer

The early event is a mutation of APC (adenomatous polyposis gene), which was first discovered in individuals with familial adenomatous polyposis (FAP). The protein encoded by APC is important in the activation of oncogene c-myc and cyclin D1, which drives the progression to malignant phenotype. Although FAP is a rare hereditary syndrome accounting for only about 1% of cases of colon cancer, APC mutations are very frequent in sporadic colorectal cancers.


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