Drug Design and Discovery Research Group, College of Pharmacy and Nutrition, University of Saskatchewan, 110 Science Place, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan S7N 5C9, Canada
Tumor suppressors refer to a large group of molecules that are capable of controlling cell division, promoting apoptosis, and suppressing metastasis. The loss of function for a tumor suppressor may lead to cancer due to uncontrolled cell division. Because of their importance, extensive studies have been undertaken to understand the different functional mechanisms of tumor suppressors. Here, we briefly review the four major mechanisms, inhibition of cell division, induction of apoptosis, DNA damage repair, and inhibition of metastasis. It is noteworthy that some tumor suppressors, such as p53, may adopt more than one mechanism for their functions.
Keywords: Cell division, apoptosis, metastasis, DNA repair, p53