The p53 Gene and Cancer
This tutorial describes the structure and function of the p53 protein, how its activity is regulated in cells, and how mutant versions of p53 can lead to cancer.
The Click & Learn presents different types of genes that, when mutated, contribute to cancer, including oncogenes, tumor suppressor genes, and DNA repair genes. It then explores one tumor suppressor gene, p53, and its role in cancer in more depth. Students learn about the structure of the protein encoded by p53 and how it normally functions to regulate cell division.
The accompanying worksheets guide students’ exploration. The “Overview Worksheet” provides an introduction to p53 and its role in cancer. The “Advanced Worksheet” challenges students to explore these ideas in greater depth, including how p53 interacts with other molecules in the cell.
Student Learning Targets
- Describe the structure-function relationship of each of p53’s domains.
- Explain how the expression and function of p53 is regulated in the cell.
- Explain how a mutated version of the p53 gene can lead to cancer.
cell death, cell division, complexing domain, DNA binding domain, Mdm2, proteasome, regulation, transactivation domain, transcription factor, tumor
AP Biology (2019)
IST-1.D, IST-1.E, IST-2.B, IST-2.C, IST-3.F, IST-3.G; SP1, SP2
IB Biology (2016)
Vision and Change (2009)