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Minireview: RET: Normal And Abnormal Functions

Massimo Santoro, Rosa Marina Melillo, Francesca Carlomagno, Giancarlo Vecchio, Alfredo Fusco

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AbstractThe RET gene encodes a single-pass transmembrane receptor tyrosine kinase. RET is the oncogene that causes papillary thyroid carcinoma and medullary thyroid carcinoma. The latter may arise as a component of multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2 syndromes; germline mutations in RET are responsible for multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2 inheritance. In this report we review data on the mechanisms leading to RET oncogenic conversion and on RET targeting as a strategy in thyroid cancer treatment.