APC (gene): A major gene that is involved in causing colorectal cancer. APC is involved in both sporadic and familial forms of colorectal cancer. A mutation in the APC gene is the earliest detectable molecular abnormality in colorectal cancer. This mutation imitates the neoplastic process 20 to 30 years before the malignancy itself is full-blown. APC is a relatively large gene on chromosome 5 in region 5q21-q22. Although a number of different mutations have been identified in the APC gene, most (about 80%) of them cluster in one area of the gene, interrupt its transcription, and truncate (cut off) the transcript. APC stands for adenomatous polyposis coli.
Subscribe to MedicineNet's General Health Newsletter
Last Editorial Review: 1/24/2017