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p53 guards the metabolic pathway less travelled

Glucose is an important source of energy and carbon, and is required for cell growth. As such, glucose utilization is increased in rapidly dividing cancer cells. The tumour suppressor p53 has now been reported to block a metabolic pathway (the pentose phosphate pathway) that diverts glucose away from bioenergetic into biosynthetic routes.

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Figure 1: The three metabolic fates of glucose in cells and the role for p53 in glucose metabolism.


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Gottlieb, E. p53 guards the metabolic pathway less travelled. Nat Cell Biol 13, 195–197 (2011).

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