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Oncogenic transcription factors: cornerstones of inflammation-linked pancreatic carcinogenesis
  1. Sandra Baumgart1,
  2. Volker Ellenrieder1,
  3. Martin E Fernandez-Zapico2
  1. 1Signaling and Transcription Laboratory, Department of Gastroenterology, Philipps-University of Marburg, Marburg, Germany
  2. 2Schulze Center for Novel Therapeutics, Division of Oncology Research, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Martin E Fernandez-Zapico, Schulze Center for Novel Therapeutics, Mayo Clinic, Gonda 19-216, 200 First St SW, Rochester, MN 55905, USA; fernandezzapico.martin{at}


Transcription factors are proteins that regulate gene expression by modulating the synthesis of messenger RNA. Since this process is often one dominant control point in the production of many proteins, transcription factors represent the key regulators of numerous cellular functions, including proliferation, differentiation and apoptosis. Pancreatic cancer progression is characterised by activation of inflammatory signalling pathways converging on a limited set of transcription factors that fine-tune gene expression patterns contributing to the growth and maintenance of these tumours. Thus strategies targeting these transcriptional networks activated in pancreatic cancer cells could block the effects of upstream inflammatory responses participating in pancreatic tumorigenesis. The authors review this field of research and summarise current strategies for targeting oncogenic transcription factors and their activating signalling networks in the treatment of pancreatic cancer.

  • Transcription factors
  • pancreatic cancer
  • inflammation
  • therapy
  • pancreatic cancer
  • carcinogenesis
  • cell signalling
  • gene regulation
  • gene expression
  • pancreatic disease
  • TGF-β
  • molecular oncology
  • pancreatic cancer
  • gastrointestinal cancer
  • pancreas
  • cancer
  • cell signalling

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; externally peer reviewed.