Telomerase: Regulation, function and transformation

  • Dong C
  • Masutomi K
  • Hahn W
  • 52


    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • 75


    Citations of this article.


Work from several laboratories over the past decade indicates that the acquisition of constitutive telomerase expression is a critical step during the malignant transformation of human cells. Normal human cells transiently express low levels of telomerase, the ribonucleoprotein responsible for extending and maintaining telomeres, and exhibit telomere shortening after extended passage, whereas most cancers exhibit constitutive telomerase expression and maintain telomeres at stable lengths. These observations establish a direct connection between immortalization and stabilization of telomere structure. However, recent work suggests that telomerase also contributes to cancer development beyond its role in maintaining stable telomere lengths. In this review, we summarize recent observations that support the concept that telomerase plays multiple roles in facilitating human cell transformation. © 2005 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Cancer
  • Senescence
  • Telomerase
  • Telomere
  • Transformation

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document

Get full text


  • Carolyn K. Dong

  • Kenkichi Masutomi

  • William C. Hahn

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free