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Role of Telomeres and Telomeric Proteins in Human Malignancies and Their Therapeutic Potential
Review

Telomeres and Telomerase in the Development of Liver Cancer

1
Department of Internal Medicine I, University Hospital Ulm, 89081 Ulm, Germany
2
Department of Urology, University Hospital Ulm, 89081 Ulm, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Cancers 2020, 12(8), 2048; https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers12082048
Received: 17 June 2020 / Revised: 16 July 2020 / Accepted: 22 July 2020 / Published: 24 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Role of Telomeres and Telomerase in Cancer)
Liver cancer is one of the most common cancer types worldwide and the fourth leading cause of cancer-related death. Liver carcinoma is distinguished by a high heterogeneity in pathogenesis, histopathology and biological behavior. Dysregulated signaling pathways and various gene mutations are frequent in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) and intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (iCCA), which represent the two most common types of liver tumors. Both tumor types are characterized by telomere shortening and reactivation of telomerase during carcinogenesis. Continuous cell proliferation, e.g., by oncogenic mutations, can cause extensive telomere shortening in the absence of sufficient telomerase activity, leading to dysfunctional telomeres and genome instability by breakage–fusion–bridge cycles, which induce senescence or apoptosis as a tumor suppressor mechanism. Telomerase reactivation is required to stabilize telomere functionality and for tumor cell survival, representing a genetic risk factor for the development of liver cirrhosis and liver carcinoma. Therefore, telomeres and telomerase could be useful targets in hepatocarcinogenesis. Here, we review similarities and differences between HCC and iCCA in telomere biology. View Full-Text
Keywords: liver cancer; hepatocellular carcinoma; intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma; telomere shortening; TERT promoter mutation; telomerase liver cancer; hepatocellular carcinoma; intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma; telomere shortening; TERT promoter mutation; telomerase
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MDPI and ACS Style

in der Stroth, L.; Tharehalli, U.; Günes, C.; Lechel, A. Telomeres and Telomerase in the Development of Liver Cancer. Cancers 2020, 12, 2048. https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers12082048

AMA Style

in der Stroth L, Tharehalli U, Günes C, Lechel A. Telomeres and Telomerase in the Development of Liver Cancer. Cancers. 2020; 12(8):2048. https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers12082048

Chicago/Turabian Style

in der Stroth, Lena, Umesh Tharehalli, Cagatay Günes, and André Lechel. 2020. "Telomeres and Telomerase in the Development of Liver Cancer" Cancers 12, no. 8: 2048. https://doi.org/10.3390/cancers12082048

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