Gene Summary

Gene:ATP7A; ATPase copper transporting alpha
Aliases: MK, MNK, DSMAX, SMAX3
Summary:This gene encodes a transmembrane protein that functions in copper transport across membranes. This protein is localized to the trans Golgi network, where it is predicted to supply copper to copper-dependent enzymes in the secretory pathway. It relocalizes to the plasma membrane under conditions of elevated extracellular copper, and functions in the efflux of copper from cells. Mutations in this gene are associated with Menkes disease, X-linked distal spinal muscular atrophy, and occipital horn syndrome. Alternatively-spliced transcript variants have been observed. [provided by RefSeq, Aug 2013]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:copper-transporting ATPase 1
Source:NCBIAccessed: 13 March, 2017


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (68)

Cancer Overview

Research Indicators

Publications Per Year (1992-2017)
Graph generated 13 March 2017 using data from PubMed using criteria.

Literature Analysis

Mouse over the terms for more detail; many indicate links which you can click for dedicated pages about the topic.

  • GSTP1
  • Mutation
  • Adenocarcinoma
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Breast Cancer
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Organoplatinum Compounds
  • Drug Resistance
  • Cisplatin
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Xenograft Models
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Spectrometry, Mass, Electrospray Ionization
  • Proteomics
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Copper
  • Colonic Neoplasms
  • Adenosine Triphosphatases
  • X Chromosome
  • Apoptosis
  • Platinum
  • Phytogenic Anticancer Agents
  • Messenger RNA
  • Up-Regulation
  • Skin Cancer
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Vinblastine
  • Thiocarbamates
  • Tissue Distribution
  • Gene Knockdown Techniques
  • Copper Sulfate
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Lung Cancer
  • Cell Survival
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Western Blotting
  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Tumor Stem Cell Assay
  • ras Proteins
  • Cation Transport Proteins
Tag cloud generated 13 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (5)

Data table showing topics related to specific cancers and associated disorders. Scope includes mutations and abnormal protein expression.

Note: list is not exhaustive. Number of papers are based on searches of PubMed (click on topic title for arbitrary criteria used).

Latest Publications: ATP7A (cancer-related)

Aras Y, Erguven M, Aktas E, et al.
Antagonist activity of the antipsychotic drug lithium chloride and the antileukemic drug imatinib mesylate during glioblastoma treatment in vitro.
Neurol Res. 2016; 38(9):766-74 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Glioblastoma (GBM), the most common primary tumour of the central nervous system, is characterised by a high malignancy and poor prognosis. The aims of this study were to investigate whether the combination of imatinib mesylate (IM) and lithium chloride (LiCl) exhibited a synergistic effect in treatment and to determine whether midkine (MK) affected the fate of this treatment in vitro.
METHODS: Monolayer and spheroid cultures of the T98G human GBM cell line were treated with an IM and LiCl combination for 72 h. The cell proliferation index, apoptotic index, cell cycle distribution, apoptotic and anti-apoptotic protein levels, and cAMP level as well as the cellular morphology and ultrastructure were evaluated.
RESULTS: All applications inhibited cell proliferation and induced apoptosis. The most substantial decreases in cell proliferation and the caspase-3, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), platelet derived growth factor receptor-alpha (PDGFR-α), multidrug resistance protein-1 (MRP-1), aquaporin-4 (AQP-4) and cAMP levels were induced by the LiCl treatment, which exhibited more pronounced effects compared with the combination treatment. LiCl was less effective in decreasing the MK and B cell lymphoma-2 (Bcl-2) levels compared with the combination treatment. The most substantial decrease in the p170 levels was identified following the combination treatment, whereas IM induced the second greatest decrease. LiCl alone had no effect on the p170 levels. IM induced the most substantial decrease in the phospho-glycogen synthase kinase 3-beta (p-GSK-3β)/glycogen synthase kinase 3-beta (GSK-3β) ratio, and LiCl induced the second most substantial decrease. Both LiCl and the combination treatment induced G2 + M arrest, whereas IM induced G0 + G1 arrest after 72 h of exposure. An apoptotic appearance and autophagic vacuoles were commonly identified in the LiCl, combination and IM groups, respectively.
CONCLUSIONS: The combination of IM and LiCl exhibited an antagonist effect, and MK had a role at this antagonism.

Mk H, Prince S, Mohan AM, et al.
Association of Notch4 with metastasis in human oral squamous cell carcinoma.
Life Sci. 2016; 156:38-46 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIMS: Despite the development of several therapeutic strategies in the past decades, clinicians have failed to improve the survival rate of oral squamous cell carcinoma patients due to the highly metastatic nature of the disease and its high recurrence rate. However, there is accumulating evidence that aberrant Notch4 expression has a critical role in tumorigenesis but its prognostic value and function in OSCC remains uncertain. This study therefore investigates (1) the expression of Notch4 and its downstream target, myelin associated glycoprotein (MAG) in tissue samples representative of different stages of OSCC with varied clinicopathological features and (2) the possible involvement of Notch4 in the proliferation and migration of OSCC cells.
MAIN METHODS: Sixty patients reported positive for OSCC were obtained along with the clinicopathological parameters and we performed immunohistochemistry, western blotting and RT-PCR for Notch4 and MAG expression. Further, the metastatic role of Notch4 was analyzed in the HSC-3 cell line by cell proliferation and migration assays.
KEY FINDINGS: Our findings reveal that Notch4 and MAG expression are significantly upregulated in specifically late stages of OSCC tumor sections and perineural invasion (PNI) positive cases. In addition, depletion of Notch4 by siRNA inhibited the proliferative and migratory ability of the highly metastatic HSC-3 OSCC cells.
SIGNIFICANCE: Our study indicates that the aberrant activation of Notch4 promotes OSCC metastasis through perineural spread and ascertains its value as a significant prognostic marker and potential therapeutic target to treat this highly aggressive malignancy.

Chen M, Ye Y, Zou B, et al.
C14orf166 is a high-risk biomarker for bladder cancer and promotes bladder cancer cell proliferation.
J Transl Med. 2016; 14:55 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: C14orf166 (chromosome 14 open reading frame 166) plays a crucial role in some tumors, but its role in bladder cancer hasn't been explored.
METHOD: We determined C14orf166 expression in uroepithelial cell, bladder cancer cells, normal bladder tissues and bladder cancer tissues using quantitative RT-PCR and western blot, we then analyzed the correlation between C14orf166 expression and clinicopathologic characteristics in a cohort of 149 patients with bladder cancer. Finally we downregulated C14orf166 and determined its role in the proliferation of bladder cancer cell lines using MTT assay, colony formation assay and cell cycle assay.
RESULTS: We demonstrated C14orf166 was upregulated in bladder cancer cells and tissues, C14orf166 expression was significantly correlated with larger tumor size (P = 0.001), lymph node involvement (P < 0.001), histological differentiation (P < 0.001), survival time and vital states, and high C14orf166 expression correlated with poor survival, these results suggested C14orf166 served as a high-risk marker for bladder cancer. Knockdown of C14orf166 decreased the proliferation rate and colony formation ability of bladder cancer cells, and arrested cell cycle in G1/S transition. Further analysis showed that C14orf166 knockdown caused abnormal expression of key proteins for G1/S transition, such as Cyclin D1, P21, P27 and Rb phosphorylation.
CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrates that C14orf166 promotes bladder cancer cell proliferation and can be a novel prognostic biomarker for patients with bladder cancer.

Chang Q, Chandrashekhar M, Ketela T, et al.
Cytokinetic effects of Wee1 disruption in pancreatic cancer.
Cell Cycle. 2016; 15(4):593-604 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
The Wee1 kinase, which is activated in response to DNA damage, regulates exit from G2 through inhibitory phosphorylation of Cdk1/Cdc2, and is an attractive drug target. However, recent work has highlighted effects of Cdk2 phosphorylation by Wee1 on movement through S-phase, suggesting the potential to sensitize to S-phase specific agents by Wee1 inhibitors. In this paper we applied multiparametric flow cytometry to patient-derived pancreatic cancer xenograft tumor cells to study the cell cycle perturbations of Wee1 disruption via the small molecule inhibitor MK-1775, and genetic knockdown. We find that in vitro treatment with MK-1775, and to a lesser degree, Wee1 RNA transcript knockdown, results in the striking appearance of S-phase cells prematurely entering into mitosis. This effect was not seen in vivo in any of the models tested. Here, although we noted an increase of S-phase cells expressing the damage response marker γH2AX, treatment with MK-1775 did not significantly sensitize cells to the cytidine analog gemcitabine. Treatment with MK-1775 did result in a transient but large increase in cells expressing the mitotic marker phosphorylated H3S10 that reached a peak 4 hours after treatment. This suggests a role for Wee1 regulating the progression of genomically unstable cancer cells through G2 in the absence of extrinsically-applied DNA damage. A single dose of 8Gy ionizing radiation resulted in the time-dependent accumulation of Cyclin A2 positive/phosphorylated H3S10 negative cells at the 4N position, which was abrogated by treatment with MK-1775. Consistent with these findings, a genome-scale pooled RNA interference screen revealed that toxic doses of MK-1775 are suppressed by CDK2 or Cyclin A2 knockdown. These findings support G2 exit as the more significant effect of Wee1 inhibition in pancreatic cancers.

Zhijun H, Shusheng W, Han M, et al.
Pre-clinical characterization of 4SC-202, a novel class I HDAC inhibitor, against colorectal cancer cells.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(8):10257-67 [PubMed] Related Publications
Histone deacetylase (HDAC) overactivity in colorectal cancer (CRC) promotes cancer progression. In the current study, we showed that 4SC-202, a novel class I HDAC inhibitor (HDACi), potently inhibited survival and proliferation of primary human colon cancer cells and established CRC lines (HT-29, HCT-116, HT-15, and DLD-1). Yet, the same 4SC-202 treatment was non-cytotoxic to colon epithelial cells where HDAC-1/-2 expressions were extremely low. 4SC-202 provoked apoptosis activation in CRC cells, while caspase inhibitors (z-VAD-CHO and z-DVED-CHO) significantly alleviated 4SC-202-exerted cytotoxicity in CRC cells. Meanwhile, 4SC-202 induced dramatic G2-M arrest in CRC cells. Further studies showed that AKT activation might be an important resistance factor of 4SC-202. 4SC-202-induced cytotoxicity was dramatically potentiated with serum starvation, AKT inhibition (by perifosine or MK-2206), or AKT1-shRNA knockdown in CRC cells. On the other hand, exogenous expression of constitutively active AKT1 (CA-AKT1) decreased the sensitivity by 4SC-202 in HT-29 cells. Notably, 4SC-202, at a low concentration, enhanced oxaliplatin-induced in vitro anti-CRC activity. In vivo, we showed that oral gavage of 4SC-202 inhibited HT-29 xenograft growth in nude mice, and when combined with oxaliplatin, its activity was further strengthened. Together, these pre-clinical results indicate that 4SC-202 may be further investigated as a valuable anti-CRC agent/chemo-adjuvant.

Shen SH, Yu N, Liu XY, et al.
Gamma-glutamylcyclotransferase promotes the growth of human glioma cells by activating Notch-Akt signaling.
Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2016; 471(4):616-20 [PubMed] Related Publications
Glioma as an aggressive type tumor is rapidly growing and has become one of the leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide. γ-Glutamylcyclotransferase (GGCT) has been shown as a diagnostic marker in various cancers. To reveal whether there is a correlation between GGCT and human glioma, GGCT expression in human glioma tissues and cell lines was first determined. We found that GGCT expression was up-regulated in human glioma tissues and cell lines. Further, we demonstrate that GGCT knockdown inhibits glioma cell T98G and U251 proliferation and colony formation, whereas GGCT overexpression leads to oppose effects. GGCT overexpression promotes the expression of Notch receptors and activates Akt signaling in glioma cells, and Notch-Akt signaling is activated in glioma tissues with high expression of GGCT. Finally, we show that inhibition of Notch-Akt signaling with Notch inhibitor MK-0752 blocks the effects of GGCT on glioma proliferation and colony formation. In conclusion, GGCT plays a critical role in glioma cell proliferation and may be a potential cancer therapeutic target.

Elsnerova K, Mohelnikova-Duchonova B, Cerovska E, et al.
Gene expression of membrane transporters: Importance for prognosis and progression of ovarian carcinoma.
Oncol Rep. 2016; 35(4):2159-70 [PubMed] Related Publications
Membrane transporters (such as ABCs, SLCs and ATPases) act in carcinogenesis and chemoresistance development, but their relevance for prognosis of epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) remains poorly understood. We evaluated the gene expression profile of 39 ABC and 12 SLC transporters and three ATPases in EOC tissues and addressed their putative role in prognosis and clinical course of EOC patients. Relative gene expression in a set of primary EOC (n=57) and in control ovarian tissues (n=14) was estimated and compared with clinical data and survival of patients. Obtained data were validated in an independent set of patients (n=60). Six ABCs and SLC22A18 gene were significantly overexpressed in carcinomas when compared with controls, while expression of 12 ABCs, five SLCs, ATP7A and ATP11B was decreased. Expression of ABCA12, ABCC3, ABCC6, ABCD3, ABCG1 and SLC22A5 was higher in high grade serous carcinoma compared with other subtypes. ABCA2 gene expression significantly associated with EOC grade in both sets of patients. Notably, expression level of ABCA9, ABCA10, ABCC9 and SLC16A14 significantly associated with progression-free survival (PFS) of the disease in either pilot or validation sets. ABCG2 level associated with PFS in the pooled set of patients. In conclusion, ABCA2, ABCA9, ABCA10, ABCC9, ABCG2 and SLC16A14 present novel putative markers of EOC progression and together with the revealed relationship between ABCA12, ABCC3, ABCC6, ABCD3, ABCG1 and SLC22A5 expression, and high grade serous type of EOC should be further examined by larger follow-up study.

Matheson CJ, Venkataraman S, Amani V, et al.
A WEE1 Inhibitor Analog of AZD1775 Maintains Synergy with Cisplatin and Demonstrates Reduced Single-Agent Cytotoxicity in Medulloblastoma Cells.
ACS Chem Biol. 2016; 11(4):921-30 [PubMed] Related Publications
The current treatment for medulloblastoma includes surgical resection, radiation, and cytotoxic chemotherapy. Although this approach has improved survival rates, the high doses of chemotherapy required for clinical efficacy often result in lasting neurocognitive defects and other adverse events. Therefore, the development of chemosensitizing agents that allow dose reductions of cytotoxic agents, limiting their adverse effects but maintaining their clinical efficacy, would be an attractive approach to treat medulloblastoma. We previously identified WEE1 kinase as a new molecular target for medulloblastoma from an integrated genomic analysis of gene expression and a kinome-wide siRNA screen of medulloblastoma cells and tissue. In addition, we demonstrated that WEE1 prevents DNA damage-induced cell death by cisplatin and that the WEE1 inhibitor AZD1775 displays synergistic activity with cisplatin. AZD1775 was developed as a WEE1 inhibitor from an initial hit from a high-throughput screen. However, given the lack of structure-activity data for AZD1775, we developed a small series of analogs to determine the requirements for WEE1 inhibition and further examine the effects of WEE1 inhibition in medulloblastoma. Interestingly, the compounds that inhibited WEE1 in the same nanomolar range as AZD1775 had significantly reduced single-agent cytotoxicity compared with AZD1775 and displayed synergistic activity with cisplatin in medulloblastoma cells. The potent cytotoxicity of AZD1775, unrelated to WEE1 inhibition, may result in dose-limiting toxicities and exacerbate adverse effects; therefore, WEE1 inhibitors that demonstrate low cytotoxicity could be dosed at higher concentrations to chemosensitize the tumor and potentiate the effect of DNA-damaging agents such as cisplatin.

Vilgelm AE, Johnson CA, Prasad N, et al.
Connecting the Dots: Therapy-Induced Senescence and a Tumor-Suppressive Immune Microenvironment.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2016; 108(6):djv406 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Tumor cell senescence is a common outcome of anticancer therapy. Here we investigated how therapy-induced senescence (TIS) affects tumor-infiltrating leukocytes (TILs) and the efficacy of immunotherapy in melanoma.
METHODS: Tumor senescence was induced by AURKA or CDK4/6 inhibitors (AURKAi, CDK4/6i). Transcriptomes of six mouse tumors with differential response to AURKAi were analyzed by RNA sequencing, and TILs were characterized by flow cytometry. Chemokine RNA and protein expression were determined by quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Therapeutic response was queried in immunodeficient mice, in mice with CCL5-deficient tumors, and in mice cotreated with CD137 agonist to activate TILs. CCL5 expression in reference to TIS and markers of TILs was studied in human melanoma tumors using patient-derived xenografts (n = 3 patients, n = 3 mice each), in AURKAi clinical trial samples (n = 3 patients, before/after therapy), and in The Cancer Genome Atlas (n = 278). All statistical tests were two-sided.
RESULTS: AURKAi response was associated with induction of the immune transcriptome (P = 3.5 x 10-29) while resistance inversely correlated with TIL numbers (Spearman r = -0.87, P < .001). AURKAi and CDK4/6i promoted the recruitment of TILs by inducing CCL5 secretion in melanoma cells (P ≤ .005) in an NF-κB-dependent manner. Therapeutic response to AURKAi was impaired in immunodeficient compared with immunocompetent mice (0% vs 67% tumors regressed, P = .01) and in mice bearing CCL5-deficient vs control tumors (P = .61 vs P = .02); however, AURKAi response was greatly enhanced in mice also receiving T-cell-activating immunotherapy (P < .001). In human tumors, CCL5 expression was also induced by AURKAi (P ≤ .02) and CDK4/6i (P = .01) and was associated with increased immune marker expression (P = 1.40 x 10-93).
CONCLUSIONS: Senescent melanoma cells secret CCL5, which promotes recruitment of TILs. Combining TIS with immunotherapy that enhances tumor cell killing by TILs is a promising novel approach to improve melanoma outcomes.

Zhai B, Zhang X, Sun B, et al.
MK2206 overcomes the resistance of human liver cancer stem cells to sorafenib by inhibition of pAkt and upregulation of pERK.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(6):8047-55 [PubMed] Related Publications
Sorafenib is a multikinase inhibitor for the treatment of hepatocellular carcinoma. However, most patients who initially respond to sorafenib become refractory. In a previous study, we demonstrated that sphere-forming cells derived from liver cancer cell lines possess the properties of liver cancer stem cells (LCSCs). In the present study, we found that successive passages of LCSCs were more resistant to sorafenib, and LCSCs treated with sorafenib showed an increase in spheroid formation with a lower inhibition rate. MK2206, but not various other inhibitors of cell signaling pathways, enhanced their sensitivity to sorafenib, increased the apoptotic rate, and suppressed the growth of LCSC xenografts in vivo (P < 0.01); sorafenib treatment decreased the level of active phosphorylated (p)Akt (Thr308) and reduced the levels of active pAkt (Ser473) and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) in LCSCs, whereas MK2206 reduced pAkt expression and increased pERK expression. Cotreatment with sorafenib and MK2206 reduced pAkt and pERK expression in LCSCs and xenografted tumors (P < 0.01). Treatment with either sorafenib or MK2206 decreased the expression of EpCAM and CD133 in LCSCs, which was more evident after combined treatment. Based on these results, we conclude that resistance to sorafenib is associated with weak ERK signaling and strong Akt signaling in LCSCs. By inhibition of Akt and upregulation of ERK, MK2206 overcomes the resistance of LCSCs to sorafenib.

Yi KH, Lauring J
Recurrent AKT mutations in human cancers: functional consequences and effects on drug sensitivity.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(4):4241-51 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Precision oncology trials based on tumor gene sequencing depend on robust knowledge about the phenotypic consequences of the genetic variants identified in patients' tumors. Mutations in AKT1-3 occur in 3-5% of human cancers. Although a single hotspot mutation, E17K, is the most common, well characterized activating mutations account for a minority of Akt variants that have been identified in large tumor sequencing studies to date. In order to determine the potential clinical relevance of both common and rare Akt mutations, we expressed a set of over twenty recurrent Akt mutants in three different cell lines and evaluated activation of Akt pathway signaling and effects on growth. We determined their relative sensitivity to allosteric and ATP-competitive Akt inhibitors in clinical development. Most Akt mutants did not activate pathway signaling compared to wild type Akt and did not affect growth properties. In addition, the most common activating Akt mutations, including Akt1 E17K, L52R, and Q79K conferred neither sensitivity nor resistance to Akt inhibitors. Equivocal evidence was found that Akt1 D323H and Akt2 W80C mutants are relatively resistant to the allosteric Akt inhibitor MK-2206, but not an ATP-competitive inhibitor. Our results suggest that the vast majority of rare Akt variants are passenger mutations with no effect on drug sensitivity. The hypothesis that activating Akt mutations predict for Akt inhibitor sensitivity remains to be tested clinically, but is not yet supported by our preclinical data.

Seibold P, Schmezer P, Behrens S, et al.
A polymorphism in the base excision repair gene PARP2 is associated with differential prognosis by chemotherapy among postmenopausal breast cancer patients.
BMC Cancer. 2015; 15:978 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Personalized therapy considering clinical and genetic patient characteristics will further improve breast cancer survival. Two widely used treatments, chemotherapy and radiotherapy, can induce oxidative DNA damage and, if not repaired, cell death. Since base excision repair (BER) activity is specific for oxidative DNA damage, we hypothesized that germline genetic variation in this pathway will affect breast cancer-specific survival depending on treatment.
METHODS: We assessed in 1,408 postmenopausal breast cancer patients from the German MARIE study whether cancer specific survival after adjuvant chemotherapy, anthracycline chemotherapy, and radiotherapy is modulated by 127 Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs) in 21 BER genes. For SNPs with interaction terms showing p<0.1 (likelihood ratio test) using multivariable Cox proportional hazard analyses, replication in 6,392 patients from nine studies of the Breast Cancer Association Consortium (BCAC) was performed.
RESULTS: rs878156 in PARP2 showed a differential effect by chemotherapy (p=0.093) and was replicated in BCAC studies (p=0.009; combined analysis p=0.002). Compared to non-carriers, carriers of the variant G allele (minor allele frequency=0.07) showed better survival after chemotherapy (combined allelic hazard ratio (HR)=0.75, 95% 0.53-1.07) and poorer survival when not treated with chemotherapy (HR=1.42, 95% 1.08-1.85). A similar effect modification by rs878156 was observed for anthracycline-based chemotherapy in both MARIE and BCAC, with improved survival in carriers (combined allelic HR=0.73, 95% CI 0.40-1.32). None of the SNPs showed significant differential effects by radiotherapy.
CONCLUSIONS: Our data suggest for the first time that a SNP in PARP2, rs878156, may together with other genetic variants modulate cancer specific survival in breast cancer patients depending on chemotherapy. These germline SNPs could contribute towards the design of predictive tests for breast cancer patients.

Toledo CM, Ding Y, Hoellerbauer P, et al.
Genome-wide CRISPR-Cas9 Screens Reveal Loss of Redundancy between PKMYT1 and WEE1 in Glioblastoma Stem-like Cells.
Cell Rep. 2015; 13(11):2425-39 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
To identify therapeutic targets for glioblastoma (GBM), we performed genome-wide CRISPR-Cas9 knockout (KO) screens in patient-derived GBM stem-like cells (GSCs) and human neural stem/progenitors (NSCs), non-neoplastic stem cell controls, for genes required for their in vitro growth. Surprisingly, the vast majority GSC-lethal hits were found outside of molecular networks commonly altered in GBM and GSCs (e.g., oncogenic drivers). In vitro and in vivo validation of GSC-specific targets revealed several strong hits, including the wee1-like kinase, PKMYT1/Myt1. Mechanistic studies demonstrated that PKMYT1 acts redundantly with WEE1 to inhibit cyclin B-CDK1 activity via CDK1-Y15 phosphorylation and to promote timely completion of mitosis in NSCs. However, in GSCs, this redundancy is lost, most likely as a result of oncogenic signaling, causing GBM-specific lethality.

Franks SE, Briah R, Jones RA, Moorehead RA
Unique roles of Akt1 and Akt2 in IGF-IR mediated lung tumorigenesis.
Oncotarget. 2016; 7(3):3297-316 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
AKT is a serine-threonine kinase that becomes hyperactivated in a number of cancers including lung cancer. Based on AKT's association with malignancy, molecules targeting AKT have entered clinical trials for solid tumors including lung cancer. However, the AKT inhibitors being evaluated in clinical trials indiscriminately inhibit all three AKT isoforms (AKT1-3) and it remains unclear whether AKT isoforms have overlapping or divergent functions. Using a transgenic mouse model where IGF-IR overexpression drives lung tumorigenesis, we found that loss of Akt1 inhibited while loss of Akt2 enhanced lung tumor development. Lung tumors that developed in the absence of Akt2 were less likely to appear as discrete nodules and more frequently displayed a dispersed growth pattern. RNA sequencing revealed a number of genes differentially expressed in lung tumors lacking Akt2 and five of these genes, Actc1, Bpifa1, Mmp2, Ntrk2, and Scgb3a2 have been implicated in human lung cancer. Using 2 human lung cancer cell lines, we observed that a selective AKT1 inhibitor, A-674563, was a more potent regulator of cell survival than the pan-AKT inhibitor, MK-2206. This study suggests that compounds selectively targeting AKT1 may prove more effective than compounds that inhibit all three AKT isoforms at least in the treatment of lung adenocarcinoma.

Huang H, Lu Y, Min L, et al.
Phospholipid Scramblase 1 Interacts with Midkine and Regulates Hepatic Cancer Cell Proliferation and Migration.
Clin Lab. 2015; 61(10):1501-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Mounting evidence indicates that nuclear targeting by growth factors plays an indispensable role on their biological activities. Midkine (MK) is a multifunctional growth factor and has been discovered to play important roles in carcinogenesis. MK has been reported to localize to the nucleus and nucleolus of HepG2 cells and is involved in cell proliferation and apoptosis.
METHODS: The interaction was reconfirmed by in vitro pull down and in vivo coimmunoprecipitation (Co-IP), also by the colocalization in the HepG2 cells. The proliferation and migration was determined by MTT and trans-well assay.
RESULTS: PLSCR1 was identified as a novel MK-interacting protein. Notably, PLSCR1 interacted with MK in the cell nucleus and regulated hepatic carcinoma cell proliferation and migration.
CONCLUSIONS: This study suggests that PLSCR1 positively regulates hepatic carcinoma cell proliferation and migration through interacting with MK, thus deepening our understanding on the regulation of midkine during hepatic carcinoma growth and metastasis.

Amin M, Minton SE, LoRusso PM, et al.
A phase I study of MK-5108, an oral aurora a kinase inhibitor, administered both as monotherapy and in combination with docetaxel, in patients with advanced or refractory solid tumors.
Invest New Drugs. 2016; 34(1):84-95 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: MK-5108 is a potent/highly selective Aurora A kinase inhibitor.
METHODS: A randomized Phase I study of MK-5108, administered p.o. BID Q12h on days 1-2 in 14-21 day cycles either alone (MT; Panel1/n = 18; 200 to 1800 mg) or in combination (CT; Panel2/n = 17; 100 to 225 mg) with IV docetaxel 60 mg/m(2), determined the maximum tolerated dose (MTD), pharmacokinetics (PK), pharmacodynamics (Panel1, only) and tumor response in patients with advanced solid tumors. This study was terminated early due to toxicities in Panel2 at MK-5108 doses below the anticipated PK exposure target.
RESULTS: 35 patients enrolled (33 evaluable for tumor response). No dose-limiting toxicities (DLTs) were observed in Panel1; three patients had 3 DLTs in Panel2 (G3 and G4 febrile neutropenia at 200 and 450 mg/day, respectively; G3 infection at 450 mg/day). In Panel1, AUC0-12hr and Cmax increased less than dose proportionally following the first MT dose but increased roughly dose proportionally across 200 to 3600 mg/day after 4th dose. The t1/2 ranged from 6.6 to 13.5 h across both panels. No clear effects on immunohistochemistry markers were observed; however, significant dose-related increases in gene expression were seen pre-/post-treatment. Best responses were 9/17 stable disease (SD) (Panel1) as well as 1/16 PR and 7/16 SD (Panel2) (450 mg/day).
CONCLUSIONS: MK-5108 MT was well tolerated at doses up to 3600 mg/day with plasma levels exceeding the minimum daily exposure target (83 μM*hr). The MTD for MK-5108 + docetaxel (CT) was established at 300 mg/day, below the exposure target. Use of pharmacodynamic gene expression assays to determine target engagement was validated.

Kumar K, Chow CR, Ebine K, et al.
Differential Regulation of ZEB1 and EMT by MAPK-Interacting Protein Kinases (MNK) and eIF4E in Pancreatic Cancer.
Mol Cancer Res. 2016; 14(2):216-27 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
UNLABELLED: Human pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) tumors are associated with dysregulation of mRNA translation. In this report, it is demonstrated that PDAC cells grown in collagen exhibit increased activation of the MAPK-interacting protein kinases (MNK) that mediate eIF4E phosphorylation. Pharmacologic and genetic targeting of MNKs reverse epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), decrease cell migration, and reduce protein expression of the EMT-regulator ZEB1 without affecting ZEB1 mRNA levels. Paradoxically, targeting eIF4E, the best-characterized effector of MNKs, increases ZEB1 mRNA expression through repression of ZEB1-targeting miRNAs, miR-200c and miR-141. In contrast, targeting the MNK effector hnRNPA1, which can function as a translational repressor, increases ZEB1 protein without increasing ZEB1 mRNA levels. Importantly, treatment with MNK inhibitors blocks growth of chemoresistant PDAC cells in collagen and decreases the number of aldehyde dehydrogenase activity-positive (Aldefluor+) cells. Significantly, MNK inhibitors increase E-cadherin mRNA levels and decrease vimentin mRNA levels in human PDAC organoids without affecting ZEB1 mRNA levels. Importantly, MNK inhibitors also decrease growth of human PDAC organoids.
IMPLICATIONS: These results demonstrate differential regulation of ZEB1 and EMT by MNKs and eIF4E, and identify MNKs as potential targets in pancreatic cancer.

Pfister SX, Markkanen E, Jiang Y, et al.
Inhibiting WEE1 Selectively Kills Histone H3K36me3-Deficient Cancers by dNTP Starvation.
Cancer Cell. 2015; 28(5):557-68 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Histone H3K36 trimethylation (H3K36me3) is frequently lost in multiple cancer types, identifying it as an important therapeutic target. Here we identify a synthetic lethal interaction in which H3K36me3-deficient cancers are acutely sensitive to WEE1 inhibition. We show that RRM2, a ribonucleotide reductase subunit, is the target of this synthetic lethal interaction. RRM2 is regulated by two pathways here: first, H3K36me3 facilitates RRM2 expression through transcription initiation factor recruitment; second, WEE1 inhibition degrades RRM2 through untimely CDK activation. Therefore, WEE1 inhibition in H3K36me3-deficient cells results in RRM2 reduction, critical dNTP depletion, S-phase arrest, and apoptosis. Accordingly, this synthetic lethality is suppressed by increasing RRM2 expression or inhibiting RRM2 degradation. Finally, we demonstrate that WEE1 inhibitor AZD1775 regresses H3K36me3-deficient tumor xenografts.

Le Tourneau C, Kamal M, Tsimberidou AM, et al.
Treatment Algorithms Based on Tumor Molecular Profiling: The Essence of Precision Medicine Trials.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2016; 108(4) [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
With the advent of high-throughput molecular technologies, several precision medicine (PM) studies are currently ongoing that include molecular screening programs and PM clinical trials. Molecular profiling programs establish the molecular profile of patients' tumors with the aim to guide therapy based on identified molecular alterations. The aim of prospective PM clinical trials is to assess the clinical utility of tumor molecular profiling and to determine whether treatment selection based on molecular alterations produces superior outcomes compared with unselected treatment. These trials use treatment algorithms to assign patients to specific targeted therapies based on tumor molecular alterations. These algorithms should be governed by fixed rules to ensure standardization and reproducibility. Here, we summarize key molecular, biological, and technical criteria that, in our view, should be addressed when establishing treatment algorithms based on tumor molecular profiling for PM trials.

Szydlowski M, Kiliszek P, Sewastianik T, et al.
FOXO1 activation is an effector of SYK and AKT inhibition in tonic BCR signal-dependent diffuse large B-cell lymphomas.
Blood. 2016; 127(6):739-48 [PubMed] Related Publications
Inhibition of spleen tyrosine kinase (SYK) in tonic B-cell receptor (BCR) signal-dependent diffuse large B-cell lymphomas (DLBCLs) inhibits cellular proliferation, decreases cholesterol biosynthesis, and triggers apoptosis, at least in part via a mechanism involving decreased activity of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/AKT axis. Because forkhead box O1 (FOXO1) is a major effector of this pathway, we investigated the role of FOXO1 in toxicity of BCR pathway inhibition. Inhibition of SYK in DLBCL cells with tonic BCR signaling decreased phospho-AKT and phospho-FOXO1 levels and triggered FOXO1-driven gene expression. Introduction of constitutively active FOXO1 mutant triggered cell cycle arrest and apoptosis, indicating that increased FOXO1 activity is toxic to these DLBCL cells. Depletion of FOXO1 with short hairpin RNA led to almost complete resistance to chemical SYK inhibitor R406, demonstrating that FOXO1 is also required for R406-induced cell death. FOXO1 in these cells is also involved in regulation of expression of the critical master regulator of cholesterol biosynthesis, SREBP1. Because HRK is the key effector of SYK inhibition, we characterized a mechanism linking FOXO1 activation and HRK induction that involves caspase-dependent cleavage of HRK's transcriptional repressor DREAM. Because AKT in lymphoma cells can be regulated by other signals than BCR, we assessed the combined effects of the AKT inhibitor MK-2206 with R406 and found markedly synergistic FOXO1-dependent toxicity. In primary DLBCLs, FOXO1 expression was present in 80% of tumors, correlated with SYK activity, and was associated with longer overall survival. These results demonstrate that FOXO1 is required for SYK and AKT inhibitor-induced toxicity.

Siddiqui N, Sonenberg N
Signalling to eIF4E in cancer.
Biochem Soc Trans. 2015; 43(5):763-72 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Translational control plays a critical role in the regulation of gene expression in eukaryotes and affects many essential cellular processes, including proliferation, apoptosis and differentiation. Under most circumstances, translational control occurs at the initiation step at which the ribosome is recruited to the mRNA. The eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E (eIF4E), as part of the eIF4F complex, interacts first with the mRNA and facilitates the recruitment of the 40S ribosomal subunit. The activity of eIF4E is regulated at many levels, most profoundly by two major signalling pathways: PI3K (phosphoinositide 3-kinase)/Akt (also known and Protein Kinase B, PKB)/mTOR (mechanistic/mammalian target of rapamycin) and Ras (rat sarcoma)/MAPK (mitogen-activated protein kinase)/Mnk (MAPK-interacting kinases). mTOR directly phosphorylates the 4E-BPs (eIF4E-binding proteins), which are inhibitors of eIF4E, to relieve translational suppression, whereas Mnk phosphorylates eIF4E to stimulate translation. Hyperactivation of these pathways occurs in the majority of cancers, which results in increased eIF4E activity. Thus, translational control via eIF4E acts as a convergence point for hyperactive signalling pathways to promote tumorigenesis. Consequently, recent works have aimed to target these pathways and ultimately the translational machinery for cancer therapy.

Ueno N, Shimizu A, Kanai M, et al.
Enhanced Expression of Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor 3 IIIc Promotes Human Esophageal Carcinoma Cell Proliferation.
J Histochem Cytochem. 2016; 64(1):7-17 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Deregulated expression of fibroblast growth factor receptors (FGFRs) and their ligands plays critical roles in tumorigenesis. The gene expression of an alternatively spliced isoforms of FGFR3, FGFR3IIIc, was analyzed by RT-PCR in samples from patients with esophageal carcinoma (EC), including esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) and adenocarcinoma (EAC). The incidence of FGFR3IIIc was higher in EC [12/16 (75%); p=0.073] than in non-cancerous mucosa (NCM) [6/16 (38%)]. Indeed, an immunohistochemical analysis of early-stage ESCC showed that carcinoma cells expressing FGFR3IIIc stained positively with SCC-112, a tumor marker, and Ki67, a cell proliferation marker, suggesting that the expression of FGFR3IIIc promotes cell proliferation. We used EC-GI-10 cells endogenously expressing FGFR3IIIc as a model of ESCC to provide mechanistic insight into the role of FGFR3IIIc in ESCC. The knockdown of endogenous FGFR3 using siRNA treatment significantly abrogated cell proliferation and the overexpression of FGFR3IIIc in cells with enhanced cell proliferation. EC-GI-10 cells and ESCC from patients with EC showed endogenous expression of FGF2, a specific ligand for FGFR3IIIc, suggesting that the upregulated expression of FGFR3IIIc may create autocrine FGF signaling in ESCC. Taken together, FGFR3IIIc may have the potential to be an early-stage tumor marker and a molecular target for ESCC therapy.

Jahn B, Rochau U, Kurzthaler C, et al.
Lessons Learned from a Cross-Model Validation between a Discrete Event Simulation Model and a Cohort State-Transition Model for Personalized Breast Cancer Treatment.
Med Decis Making. 2016; 36(3):375-90 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Breast cancer is the most common malignancy among women in developed countries. We developed a model (the Oncotyrol breast cancer outcomes model) to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of a 21-gene assay when used in combination with Adjuvant! Online to support personalized decisions about the use of adjuvant chemotherapy. The goal of this study was to perform a cross-model validation.
METHODS: The Oncotyrol model evaluates the 21-gene assay by simulating a hypothetical cohort of 50-year-old women over a lifetime horizon using discrete event simulation. Primary model outcomes were life-years, quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs), costs, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs). We followed the International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research-Society for Medical Decision Making (ISPOR-SMDM) best practice recommendations for validation and compared modeling results of the Oncotyrol model with the state-transition model developed by the Toronto Health Economics and Technology Assessment (THETA) Collaborative. Both models were populated with Canadian THETA model parameters, and outputs were compared.
RESULTS: The differences between the models varied among the different validation end points. The smallest relative differences were in costs, and the greatest were in QALYs. All relative differences were less than 1.2%. The cost-effectiveness plane showed that small differences in the model structure can lead to different sets of nondominated test-treatment strategies with different efficiency frontiers. We faced several challenges: distinguishing between differences in outcomes due to different modeling techniques and initial coding errors, defining meaningful differences, and selecting measures and statistics for comparison (means, distributions, multivariate outcomes).
CONCLUSIONS: Cross-model validation was crucial to identify and correct coding errors and to explain differences in model outcomes. In our comparison, small differences in either QALYs or costs led to changes in ICERs because of changes in the set of dominated and nondominated strategies.

Restelli V, Chilà R, Lupi M, et al.
Characterization of a mantle cell lymphoma cell line resistant to the Chk1 inhibitor PF-00477736.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(35):37229-40 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) is an aggressive B-cell lymphoma characterized by the chromosomal translocation t(11;14) that leads to constitutive expression of cyclin D1, a master regulator of the G1-S phase. Chk1 inhibitors have been recently shown to be strongly effective as single agents in MCL. To investigate molecular mechanisms at the basis of Chk1 inhibitor activity, a MCL cell line resistant to the Chk1 inhibitor PF-00477736 (JEKO-1 R) was obtained and characterized. The JEKO-1 R cell line was cross resistant to another Chk1 inhibitor (AZD-7762) and to the Wee1 inhibitor MK-1775. It displayed a shorter doubling time than parental cell line, likely due to a faster S phase. Cyclin D1 expression levels were decreased in resistant cell line and its re-overexpression partially re-established PF-00477736 sensitivity. Gene expression profiling showed an enrichment in gene sets involved in pro-survival pathways in JEKO-1 R. Dasatinib treatment partly restored PF-00477736 sensitivity in resistant cells suggesting that the pharmacological interference of pro-survival pathways can overcome the resistance to Chk1 inhibitors. These data further corroborate the involvement of the t(11;14) in cellular sensitivity to Chk1 inhibitors, fostering the clinical testing of Chk1 inhibitors as single agents in MCL.

Figueroa JD, Koutros S, Colt JS, et al.
Modification of Occupational Exposures on Bladder Cancer Risk by Common Genetic Polymorphisms.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2015; 107(11) [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Few studies have demonstrated gene/environment interactions in cancer research. Using data on high-risk occupations for 2258 case patients and 2410 control patients from two bladder cancer studies, we observed that three of 16 known or candidate bladder cancer susceptibility variants displayed statistically significant and consistent evidence of additive interactions; specifically, the GSTM1 deletion polymorphism (P interaction ≤ .001), rs11892031 (UGT1A, P interaction = .01), and rs798766 (TMEM129-TACC3-FGFR3, P interaction = .03). There was limited evidence for multiplicative interactions. When we examined detailed data on a prevalent occupational exposure associated with increased bladder cancer risk, straight metalworking fluids, we also observed statistically significant additive interaction for rs798766 (TMEM129-TACC3-FGFR3, P interaction = .02), with the interaction more apparent in patients with tumors positive for FGFR3 expression. All statistical tests were two-sided. The interaction we observed for rs798766 (TMEM129-TACC3-FGFR3) with specific exposure to straight metalworking fluids illustrates the value of integrating germline genetic variation, environmental exposures, and tumor marker data to provide insight into the mechanisms of bladder carcinogenesis.

Jia M, Zhao HZ, Cheng YP, et al.
High expression of Midkine (MK) indicates poor prognosis in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia.
Hematology. 2016; 21(2):69-77 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Midkine (MK) expression has been reported to be correlated with the poor prognosis of patients with various tumors. However, there are no data available about the prognostic value of MK expression in childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).
METHODS: In this study, MK mRNA expression was determined by real-time polymerase chain reaction in 120 childhood ALL and 30 healthy volunteers. Patients were dichotomized at the median value and divided into two groups: MK(low) group and MK(high) group.
RESULTS: MK(high) patients had higher white blood cell counts, higher peripheral blood blasts percentages, and higher minimal residual disease levels than MK(low) patients. Moreover, the MK gene was expressed significantly higher in patients with relapsed ALL than in patients who maintained complete remission or at diagnosis. MK(high) patients harbored inferior relapse-free survival (RFS, P = 0.047) and overall survival (OS, P = 0.022) than MK(low) patients, and high expression of MK was found to be independently predictive of inferior OS (P = 0.032) but not RFS (P = 0.077) in the overall cohort.
CONCLUSION AND DISCUSSION: MK high expression is an independent adverse prognostic factor in childhood ALL. Its level may be incorporated into an improved risk classification system for ALL and suggest the need of alternative regimens.

Zhang Y, Talmon G, Wang J
MicroRNA-587 antagonizes 5-FU-induced apoptosis and confers drug resistance by regulating PPP2R1B expression in colorectal cancer.
Cell Death Dis. 2015; 6:e1845 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
Drug resistance is one of the major hurdles for cancer treatment. However, the underlying mechanisms are still largely unknown and therapeutic options remain limited. In this study, we show that microRNA (miR)-587 confers resistance to 5-fluorouracil (5-FU)-induced apoptosis in vitro and reduces the potency of 5-FU in the inhibition of tumor growth in a mouse xenograft model in vivo. Further studies indicate that miR-587 modulates drug resistance through downregulation of expression of PPP2R1B, a regulatory subunit of the PP2A complex, which negatively regulates AKT activation. Knockdown of PPP2R1B expression increases AKT phosphorylation, which leads to elevated XIAP expression and enhanced 5-FU resistance; whereas rescue of PPP2R1B expression in miR-587-expressing cells decreases AKT phosphorylation/XIAP expression, re-sensitizing colon cancer cells to 5-FU-induced apoptosis. Moreover, a specific and potent AKT inhibitor, MK2206, reverses miR-587-conferred 5-FU resistance. Importantly, studies of colorectal cancer specimens indicate that the expression of miR-587 and PPP2R1B positively and inversely correlates with chemoresistance, respectively, in colorectal cancer. These findings indicate that the miR-587/PPP2R1B/pAKT/XIAP signaling axis has an important role in mediating response to chemotherapy in colorectal cancer. A major implication of our study is that inhibition of miR-587 or restoration of PPP2R1B expression may have significant therapeutic potential to overcome drug resistance in colorectal cancer patients and that the combined use of an AKT inhibitor with 5-FU may increase efficacy in colorectal cancer treatment.

Bronsveld HK, ter Braak B, Karlstad Ø, et al.
Treatment with insulin (analogues) and breast cancer risk in diabetics; a systematic review and meta-analysis of in vitro, animal and human evidence.
Breast Cancer Res. 2015; 17:100 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/06/2017 Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Several studies have suggested that anti-diabetic insulin analogue treatment might increase cancer risk. The aim of this study was to review the postulated association between insulin and insulin analogue treatment and breast cancer development, and plausible mechanisms.
METHOD: A systematic literature search was performed on breast cell-line, animal and human studies using the key words 'insulin analogue' and 'breast neoplasia' in MEDLINE at PubMed, EMBASE, and ISI Web of Science databases. A quantitative and qualitative review was performed on the epidemiological data; due to a limited number of reported estimates, a meta-analysis was performed for glargine only. A comprehensive overview was composed for in vitro and animal studies. Protein and gene expression was analysed for the cell lines most frequently used in the included in vitro studies.
RESULTS: In total 16 in vitro, 5 animal, 2 in vivo human and 29 epidemiological papers were included. Insulin AspB10 showed mitogenic properties in vitro and in animal studies. Glargine was the only clinically available insulin analogue for which an increased proliferative potential was found in breast cancer cell lines. However, the pooled analysis of 13 epidemiological studies did not show evidence for an association between insulin glargine treatment and an increased breast cancer risk (HR 1.04; 95 % CI 0.91-1.17; p=0.49) versus no glargine in patients with diabetes mellitus. It has to be taken into account that the number of animal studies was limited, and epidemiological studies were underpowered and suffered from methodological limitations.
CONCLUSION: There is no compelling evidence that any clinically available insulin analogue (Aspart, Determir, Glargine, Glulisine or Lispro), nor human insulin increases breast cancer risk. Overall, the data suggests that insulin treatment is not involved in breast tumour initiation, but might induce breast tumour progression by up regulating mitogenic signalling pathways.

Wang H, Zhang Y, Lu Y, et al.
The role of stearoyl-coenzyme A desaturase 1 in clear cell renal cell carcinoma.
Tumour Biol. 2016; 37(1):479-89 [PubMed] Related Publications
This study aimed to investigate the correlations of stearoyl-coenzyme A desaturase 1 (SCD-1) with clear cell renal cell carcinoma (ccRCC) severity and PI3K-AKT-mTOR signaling pathway. From 2004 to 2006, tumor tissue and normal pericarcinomatous tissue from ccRCC samples were collected from ccRCC patients at Renji Hospital of Shanghai Jiaotong University. The expression of SCD-1 in the collected ccRCC samples and four cell lines (A498, 769-P, 786-O, and CAKI) was detected by Western blot. The correlation between SCD-1 expression and ccRCC severity was also analyzed by immunohistochemistry. Stable 786-O and 769-P ccRCC cells expressing SCD-1 short hairpin RNA (shRNA) were constructed, and the expression of proteins in the PI3K-AKT-mTOR signaling pathway was also detected. Finally, the inhibitory effect of PI3K-AKT-mTOR inhibitors (PI103, MK2206, rapamycin, AZD8055, and RAD001) on ccRCC cells stably expressing SCD-1 shRNA was also measured. Higher SCD-1 expression level was observed in ccRCC tissues compared with normal tissues. SCD-1 expression level was the highest in 786-O. SCD-1 expression was positively correlated with the tumor-node-metastasis (TNM) stage, grade of tumor cells, and lymphatic metastasis. There were no changes in the expression of AKT, ERK, PI3K, and PDK1. Significant differences were observed in the expression of p-AKT (at the Ser473 and Thr308 site), p-ERK, and two mTOR downstream molecules (4E-BP1 and p-P70S6K1) in cells stably expressing SCD-1 shRNA. PI103 and AZD8055 could enhance the inhibitory effect of SCD-1 interference on proliferation and migration of 786-O and 769-P cells. AZD8055 is recommended for the combined ccRCC treatment with shRNA interference.

Gupta S, Argilés G, Munster PN, et al.
A Phase I Trial of Combined Ridaforolimus and MK-2206 in Patients with Advanced Malignancies.
Clin Cancer Res. 2015; 21(23):5235-44 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: The PI3K/Akt/mTOR signaling pathway is aberrantly activated in many cancers. Combining ridaforolimus, an mTOR inhibitor, with MK-2206, an Akt inhibitor, may more completely block the PI3K pathway and inhibit tumor growth.
EXPERIMENTAL DESIGN: This phase I study assessed dose-limiting toxicities (DLT) and maximum tolerated dose (MTD) for the combination of oral ridaforolimus plus oral MK-2206 in patients with advanced solid tumors. Efficacy was evaluated in patients with biomarker-identified estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer (low RAS gene signature and high Ki67 index) or castration-resistant prostate cancer (PTEN deficiency) with PI3K pathway addiction.
RESULTS: Thirty-five patients were enrolled: 11 patients in part A (three breast cancer) and 24 biomarker-eligible patients in part B (16 breast cancer, eight prostate cancer). One patient with breast cancer from part A was also found to be biomarker-eligible when tested after she had clinical response. The MTD was 10 mg/d ridaforolimus 5 d/wk + 90 mg/wk MK-2206; 1 of 17 patients experienced DLT (grade 3 rash) at this dose. The most common adverse events at MTD were rash (44.4%), stomatitis (38.9%), diarrhea (27.8%), and decreased appetite (27.8%). By investigator assessment, 2 of 16 (12.5%) evaluable patients with breast cancer had partial response; by central assessment, 2 of 14 (14.3%) evaluable patients had complete response. Two patients had durable stable disease (SD) for 416 and 285 days, respectively. No patients with prostate cancer responded; one patient had SD for ≥ 6 months.
CONCLUSIONS: Combination ridaforolimus and MK-2206 showed promising activity and good tolerability in heavily pretreated patients with hormone-positive and -negative breast cancer exhibiting PI3K pathway dependence.

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