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Toxins 2013, 5(8), 1462-1474; doi:10.3390/toxins5081462
Review

The Cytotoxic Necrotizing Factor 1 from E. Coli: A Janus Toxin Playing with Cancer Regulators

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,
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 and
*
Department of Therapeutic Research and Medicines Evaluation, Superior Health Institute, viale Regina Elena 299, 00161 Rome, Italy
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 9 July 2013 / Revised: 24 July 2013 / Accepted: 6 August 2013 / Published: 14 August 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Toxins and Carcinogenesis)
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Abstract

Certain strains of Escherichia coli have been indicated as a risk factor for colon cancer. E. coli is a normal inhabitant of the human intestine that becomes pathogenic, especially in extraintestinal sites, following the acquisition of virulence factors, including the protein toxin CNF1. This Rho GTPases-activating toxin induces dysfunctions in transformed epithelial cells, such as apoptosis counteraction, pro-inflammatory cytokines’ release, COX2 expression, NF-kB activation and boosted cellular motility. As cancer may arise when the same regulatory pathways are affected, it is conceivable to hypothesize that CNF1-producing E. coli infections can contribute to cancer development. This review focuses on those aspects of CNF1 related to transformation, with the aim of contributing to the identification of a new possible carcinogenic agent from the microbial world.
Keywords: CNF1; cancer; inflammation; Rho GTPases CNF1; cancer; inflammation; Rho GTPases
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).
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Fabbri, A.; Travaglione, S.; Ballan, G.; Loizzo, S.; Fiorentini, C. The Cytotoxic Necrotizing Factor 1 from E. Coli: A Janus Toxin Playing with Cancer Regulators. Toxins 2013, 5, 1462-1474.

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