Targeting the telosome: Therapeutic implications

Marco Folini, Paolo Gandellini, Nadia Zaffaroni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Since telomere integrity is required to guarantee the unlimited replicative potential of cancer cells, telomerase, the enzyme responsible for telomere length maintenance in most human tumors, and lately also telomeres themselves have become extremely attractive targets for new anticancer interventions. At the current status of knowledge, it is still not possible to define the best therapeutic target between telomerase and telomeres. It is noteworthy that interfering with telomeres, through direct targeting of telomeric DNA or proteins involved in the telosome complex, could negatively affect the proliferative potential not only of tumors expressing telomerase activity but also of those that maintain their telomeres through alternative lengthening or still unknown mechanisms. This review presents the different therapeutic approaches proposed thus far and developed in preclinical tumor models and discusses the perspectives for their use in the clinical setting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)309-316
Number of pages8
JournalBiochimica et Biophysica Acta - Molecular Basis of Disease
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009


  • Cancer
  • G-quadruplex
  • Telomerase
  • Telomere
  • Telosome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Molecular Medicine


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