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piRNA-unbound PIWIL1 promotes metastasis

Piwi proteins are aberrantly induced in human tumours, but their function in cancer has been poorly understood. A study now shows that in the absence of piRNA loading, human PIWIL1 promotes pancreatic cancer metastasis by acting as a co-activator of the anaphase-promoting complex/cyclosome (APC/C) to degrade the cell-adhesion protein Pinin.

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Fig. 1: Models for the functions and mechanisms of action of PIWIL1.

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Correspondence to Li Ma.

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Yao, F., Ma, L. piRNA-unbound PIWIL1 promotes metastasis. Nat Cell Biol 22, 359–360 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41556-020-0502-3

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