Soft tissue sarcoma (STS) is a rare malignancy of mesenchymal origin classified into more than 50 different subtypes with distinct clinical and pathologic features. Despite the poor prognosis in the majority of patients, only modest improvements in treatment strategies have been achieved, largely due to the rarity and heterogeneity of these tumors. Therefore, the discovery of new prognostic and predictive biomarkers, together with new therapeutic targets, is of enormous interest. Phosphatase and tensin homolog (PTEN) is a well-known tumor suppressor that commonly loses its function via mutation, deletion, transcriptional silencing, or protein instability, and is frequently downregulated in distinct sarcoma subtypes. The loss of PTEN function has consequent alterations in important pathways implicated in cell proliferation, survival, migration, and genomic stability. PTEN can also interact with other tumor suppressors and oncogenic signaling pathways that have important implications for the pathogenesis in certain STSs. The aim of the present review is to summarize the biological significance of PTEN in STS and its potential role in the development of new therapeutic strategies.
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