Physiological relevance of telomeric G-quadruplex formation: a potential drug target
Article first published online: 16 JAN 2007
Copyright © 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
Volume 29, Issue 2, pages 155–165, February 2007
How to Cite
Oganesian, L. and Bryan, T. M. (2007), Physiological relevance of telomeric G-quadruplex formation: a potential drug target. Bioessays, 29: 155–165. doi: 10.1002/bies.20523
- Issue published online: 16 JAN 2007
- Article first published online: 16 JAN 2007
- The Wellcome Trust (TMB, Senior Research Fellowship. Grant Number: GR066727MA
- The National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia (LO)
The concept of a G-quartet, a unique structural arrangement intrinsic to guanine-rich DNA, was first introduced by Gellert and colleagues1 over 40 years ago. For decades, it has been uncertain whether the G-quartet and the structure that it gives rise to, the G-quadruplex, are purely in vitro phenomena. Nevertheless, the presence of signature G-rich motifs in the eukaryotic genome, and the plethora of proteins that bind to, modify or resolve this nucleic acid structure in vitro have provided circumstantial evidence for its physiological relevance. More recently, direct visualisation of G-quadruplex DNA at native telomeres was achieved, bolstering the evidence for its existence in the cell. Furthermore, G-quadruplex folded telomeric DNA has been found to perturb telomere function and to impede the action of telomerase, an enzyme overexpressed in >85% of human cancers, hence opening up a novel avenue for cancer therapy in the form of G-quadruplex stabilising agents. BioEssays 29: 155–165, 2007. © 2007 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.