Genetic instability and darwinian selection in tumours

Daniel P. Cahill, Kenneth W. Kinzler, Bert Vogelstein, Christoph Lengauer

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

455 Scopus citations


Genetic instability has long been hypothesized to be a cardinal feature of cancer. Recent work has strengthened the proposal that mutational alterations conferring instability occur early during tumour formation. The ensuing genetic instability drives tumour progression by generating mutations in oncogenes and tumour-suppressor genes. These mutant genes provide cancer cells with a selective growth advantage, thereby leading to the clonal outgrowth of a tumour. Here, we discuss the role of genetic instability in tumour formation and outline future work necessary to substantiate the genetic instability hypothesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)M57-M60
JournalTrends in Cell Biology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 1 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology


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