PerspectiveCell Biology

PTEN: An Intercellular Peacekeeper?

Sci. Signal.  13 Nov 2012:
Vol. 5, Issue 250, pp. pe50
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.2003685

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It is generally assumed that cells synthesize their own intracellular enzymes. Therefore, if expression of a specific gene is silenced in a potential cancer cell, it is expected that loss of protein function will follow. A provocative study indicates an unexpected mechanism of intercellular tumor suppression, showing that PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted from chromosome 10), a cytosolic enzyme, can be transferred between cells in exosomes to suppress signaling and proliferation in target cells.

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