BARD1 mystery: tumor suppressors are cancer susceptibility genes.

Hawsawi, Y. M., A. Shams, A. Theyab, W. A. Abdali, N. A. Hussien, H. E. Alatwi, O. R. Alzahrani, A. A. A. Oyouni, A. O. Babalghith, and M. Alreshidi, "BARD1 mystery: tumor suppressors are cancer susceptibility genes.", BMC cancer, vol. 22, issue 1, pp. 599, 2022.


The full-length BRCA1-associated RING domain 1 (BARD1) gene encodes a 777-aa protein. BARD1 displays a dual role in cancer development and progression as it acts as a tumor suppressor and an oncogene. Structurally, BARD1 has homologous domains to BRCA1 that aid their heterodimer interaction to inhibit the progression of different cancers such as breast and ovarian cancers following the BRCA1-dependant pathway. In addition, BARD1 was shown to be involved in other pathways that are involved in tumor suppression (BRCA1-independent pathway) such as the TP53-dependent apoptotic signaling pathway. However, there are abundant BARD1 isoforms exist that are different from the full-length BARD1 due to nonsense and frameshift mutations, or deletions were found to be associated with susceptibility to various cancers including neuroblastoma, lung, breast, and cervical cancers. This article reviews the spectrum of BARD1 full-length genes and its different isoforms and their anticipated associated risk. Additionally, the study also highlights the role of BARD1 as an oncogene in breast cancer patients and its potential uses as a prognostic/diagnostic biomarker and as a therapeutic target for cancer susceptibility testing and treatment.