Survivin, a member of the family of inhibitor of apoptosis proteins, functions as a key regulator of mitosis and programmed cell death. Initially, survivin was described as an inhibitor of caspase-9. However, over the last years, research studies have shown that the role of survivin in cancer pathogenesis is not limited to apoptosis inhibition but also involves the regulation of the mitotic spindle checkpoint and the promotion of angiogenesis and chemoresistance. Survivin gene expression is transcriptionally repressed by wild-type p53 and can be deregulated in cancer by several mechanisms, including gene amplification, hypomethylation, increased promoter activity, and loss of p53 function. This article reviews the multiple functions of survivin in the regulation of apoptosis, the promotion of tumorigenesis, and the development of survivin inhibitors as a novel anticancer therapeutic strategy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research