Document Type


Version Deposited

Published Version

Publication Date


Publication Title

OncoTargets and Therapy



Polyamines are multivalent organic cations essential for many cellular functions, including cell growth, differentiation, and proliferation. However, elevated polyamine levels are associated with a slew of pathological conditions, including multiple cancers. Intracellular polyamine levels are primarily controlled by the autoregulatory circuit comprising two different protein types, Antizymes (OAZ) and Antizyme Inhibitors (AZIN), which regulate the activity of the polyamine biosynthetic enzyme ornithine decarboxylase (ODC). While OAZ functions to decrease the intracellular polyamine levels by inhibiting ODC activity and exerting a negative control of polyamine uptake, AZIN operates to increase intracellular polyamine levels by binding and sequestering OAZ to relieve ODC inhibition and to increase polyamine uptake. Interestingly, OAZ and AZIN exhibit autoregulatory functions on polyamine independent pathways as well. A growing body of evidence demonstrates the dysregulation of AZIN expression in multiple cancers. Additionally, RNA editing of the Azin1 transcript results in a “gain-of-function” phenotype, which is shown to drive aggressive tumor types. This review will discuss the recent advances in AZIN’s role in cancers via aberrant polyamine upregulation and its polyamine-independent protein regulation. This report will also highlight AZIN interaction with proteins outside the polyamine biosynthetic pathway and its potential implication to cancer pathogenesis. Finally, this review will reveal the protein interaction network of AZIN isoforms by analyzing three different interactome databases.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 License

Published Citation

Tulluri V, Nemmara VV. Role of Antizyme Inhibitor Proteins in Cancers and Beyond. Onco Targets Ther. 2021;14:667-682