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Evolution of the p53 and p63/p73 Gene Families

  1. Sergey S Pintus

Published Online: 15 SEP 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0021749



How to Cite

Pintus, S. S. 2009. Evolution of the p53 and p63/p73 Gene Families. eLS. .

Author Information

  1. Institute of Cytology and Genetics, Novosibirsk, Russia

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 SEP 2009


The tumour suppressor protein p53 is one of the most studied eukaryote proteins. The finding of its paralogues – p63 and p73 – inspired investigations of the whole family. p73 and p63 appeared to have functions distinct from p53 and to be involved in complex regulation of the latter. Evolutionary studies revealed distant homologues of the family not only in vertebrates but also in protostomes and even in nonmetazoans. The evolutionary history of the p53 family and its relatives is complex, controversial and its intensive study goes on.

Key concepts:

  • The p53 and p63/p73 gene families evolve from the common p63-like ancestor via specialization through gene duplications and domain gains and losses.


  • p63;
  • p73;
  • p53;
  • evolution;
  • phylogeny