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Nip the HPV encoded evil in the cancer bud: HPV reshapes TRAILs and signaling landscapes

Talha Abdul Halim1, Ammad Ahmad Farooqi2* and Farrukh Zaman1

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology, RLMC, 35 Km Ferozepur Road, Lahore, Pakistan

2 Laboratory for Translational oncology and Personalized Medicine, RLMC, 35 Km Ferozepur Road, Lahore, Pakistan

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Cancer Cell International 2013, 13:61  doi:10.1186/1475-2867-13-61

Published: 17 June 2013


HPV encoded proteins can elicit ectopic protein–protein interactions that re-wire signaling pathways, in a mode that promotes malignancy. Moreover, accumulating data related to HPV is now providing compelling substantiation of a central role played by HPV in escaping immunosurveillance and impairment of apoptotic response. What emerges is an intricate network of Wnt, TGF, Notch signaling cascades that forms higher-order ligand–receptor complexes routing downstream signaling in HPV infected cells. These HPV infected cells are regulated both extracellularly by ligand receptor axis and intracellularly by HPV encoded proteins and impair TRAIL mediated apoptosis. We divide this review into different sections addressing how linear signaling pathways integrate to facilitate carcinogenesis and compounds that directly or indirectly reverse these aberrant interactions offer new possibilities for therapy in cancer. Although HPV encoded proteins mediated misrepresentation of pathways is difficult to target, improved drug-discovery platforms and new technologies have facilitated the discovery of agents that can target dysregulated pathways in HPV infected cervical cancer cells, thus setting the stage for preclinical models and clinical trials.