. 2019 Jan;19(4).
doi: 10.1038/s41568-019-0105-0.

Rare ribosomopathies: insights into mechanisms of cancer

Anna Aspesi 1 Steven R Ellis 2 
  • PMID: 30670820
  •     22 citations


Long thought to be too big and too ubiquitous to fail, we now know that human cells can fail to make sufficient amounts of ribosomes, causing a number of diseases collectively known as ribosomopathies. The best characterized ribosomopathies, with the exception of Treacher Collins syndrome, are inherited bone marrow failure syndromes, each of which has a marked increase in cancer predisposition relative to the general population. Although rare, emerging data reveal that the inherited bone marrow failure syndromes may be underdiagnosed on the basis of classical symptomology, leaving undiagnosed patients with these syndromes at an elevated risk of cancer without adequate counselling and surveillance. The link between the inherited ribosomopathies and cancer has led to greater awareness that somatic mutations in factors involved in ribosome biogenesis may also be drivers in sporadic cancers. Our goal here is to compare and contrast the pathophysiological mechanisms underpinning ribosomopathies to gain a better understanding of the mechanisms that predispose these disorders to cancer.

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