Gene Summary

Gene:CRKL; CRK like proto-oncogene, adaptor protein
Summary:This gene encodes a protein kinase containing SH2 and SH3 (src homology) domains which has been shown to activate the RAS and JUN kinase signaling pathways and transform fibroblasts in a RAS-dependent fashion. It is a substrate of the BCR-ABL tyrosine kinase, plays a role in fibroblast transformation by BCR-ABL, and may be oncogenic.[provided by RefSeq, Jan 2009]
Databases:VEGA, OMIM, HGNC, Ensembl, GeneCard, Gene
Protein:crk-like protein
Source:NCBIAccessed: 13 March, 2017


What does this gene/protein do?
Show (13)
Pathways:What pathways are this gene/protein implicaed in?
Show (9)

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.

  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Lung Cancer
  • Transcription
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cell Movement
  • Stromal Cells
  • drug, Dasatinib (Sprycel)
  • Tyrosine
  • Trans-Activators
  • Transfection
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Phosphorylation
  • src Homology Domains
  • Neoplastic Cell Transformation
  • Protein Kinase Inhibitors
  • Imatinib Mesylate
  • Young Adult
  • Western Blotting
  • p53 Protein
  • Pyrimidines
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • Piperazines
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Benzamides
  • Chromosome 22
  • Fusion Proteins, bcr-abl
  • K562 Cells
  • Mutation
  • Apoptosis
  • Drug Resistance
  • Thiazoles
  • Leukemic Gene Expression Regulation
  • Phosphoproteins
  • Signal Transduction
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-crk
  • Protein-Tyrosine Kinases
  • Cancer Gene Expression Regulation
  • Signal Transducing Adaptor Proteins
  • CRKL
  • Protein Binding
  • Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia
Tag cloud generated 13 March, 2017 using data from PubMed, MeSH and CancerIndex

Specific Cancers (2)

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: CRKL (cancer-related)

Horiguchi M, Fujioka M, Kondo T, et al.
Improved FRET Biosensor for the Measurement of BCR-ABL Activity in Chronic Myeloid Leukemia Cells.
Cell Struct Funct. 2017; 42(1):15-26 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although the co-development of companion diagnostics with molecular targeted drugs is desirable, truly efficient diagnostics are limited to diseases in which chromosomal translocations or overt mutations are clearly correlated with drug efficacy. Moreover, even for such diseases, few methods are available to predict whether drug administration is effective for each individual patient whose disease is expected to respond to the drug(s). We have previously developed a biosensor based on the principle of Förster resonance energy transfer to measure the activity of the tyrosine kinase BCR-ABL and its response to drug treatment in patient-derived chronic myeloid leukemia cells. The biosensor harbors CrkL, one of the major substrates of BCR-ABL, and is therefore named Pickles after phosphorylation indicator of CrkL en substrate. The efficacy of this technique as a clinical test has been demonstrated, but the number of cells available for analysis is limited in a case-dependent manner, owing to the cleavage of the biosensor in patient-derived leukemia cells. Here, we describe an improved biosensor with an amino acid substitution and a nuclear export signal being introduced. Of the two predicted cleavage positions in CrkL, the mutations inhibited one cleavage completely and the other cleavage partially, thus collectively increasing the number of cells available for drug evaluation. This improved version of the biosensor holds promise in the future development of companion diagnostics to predict responses to tyrosine kinase inhibitors in patients with chronic myeloid leukemia.

Koczkowska M, Wierzba J, Śmigiel R, et al.
Genomic findings in patients with clinical suspicion of 22q11.2 deletion syndrome.
J Appl Genet. 2017; 58(1):93-98 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Chromosome 22q11.2 deletion syndrome, one of the most common human genomic syndromes, has highly heterogeneous clinical presentation. Patients usually harbor a 1.5 to 3 Mb hemizygous deletion at chromosome 22q11.2, resulting in pathognomic TBX1, CRKL and/or MAPK1 haploinsufficiency. However, there are some individuals with clinical features resembling the syndrome who are eventually diagnosed with genomic disorders affecting other chromosomal regions. The objective of this study was to evaluate the additive value of high-resolution array-CGH testing in the cohort of 41 patients with clinical features of 22q11.2 deletion syndrome and negative results of standard cytogenetic diagnostic testing (karyotype and FISH for 22q11.2 locus). Array-CGH analysis revealed no aberrations at chromosomes 22 or 10 allegedly related to the syndrome. Five (12.2 %) patients were found to have other genomic imbalances, namely 17q21.31 microdeletion syndrome (MIM#610443), 1p36 deletion syndrome (MIM#607872), NF1 microduplication syndrome (MIM#613675), chromosome 6pter-p24 deletion syndrome (MIM#612582) and a novel interstitial deletion at 3q26.31 of 0.65 Mb encompassing a dosage-dependent gene NAALADL2. Our study demonstrates that the implementation of array-CGH into the panel of classic diagnostic procedures adds significantly to their efficacy. It allows for detection of constitutional genomic imbalances in 12 % of subjects with negative result of karyotype and FISH targeted for 22q11.2 region. Moreover, if used as first-tier genetic test, the method would provide immediate diagnosis in ∼40 % phenotypic 22q11.2 deletion subjects.

Wang Y, Dong X, Hu B, et al.
The effects of Micro-429 on inhibition of cervical cancer cells through targeting ZEB1 and CRKL.
Biomed Pharmacother. 2016; 80:311-21 [PubMed] Related Publications
MicroRNA-429 (miR-429) has been suggested to inhibit epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), mainly due to targeting of ZEB1 and ZEB2, which are repressors of the cell to cell contact protein, E-cadherin. In this study, we indicated that regulation of miR-429 in cervical cancer cells modulates cell migration, elongation, as well as transforming growth factor β (TGF-β)-induced stress fiber formation through regulating the cytoskeleton reorganization which is likely independent of the zinc finger E-box binding homeobox (ZEB)/E-cadherin axis. ZEB1 and Crk-like adapter protein (CRKL), as novel targets of miR-429 and direct regulators of the actin cytoskeleton were identified. Remarkably, expression levels of ZEB1 and CRKL were inversely associated with the level of miR-429 in cervical cancer cell lines. In addition, individual knockdown and over-expression of these targeting genes phenocopied the roles of miR-429 over-expression and inhibition on cell elongation, migration, stress fiber formation, and invasion. Targeting of ZEB1 by miR-429 led to a decreased expression and transcriptional activity of CRB3, regulated by interference with the translocation of the CRB3. This finally led to decreasing of the expression of Crumbs 3 (CRB3), which is needed for the formation of stress fiber and contractility. Therefore, miR-429 affects cervical cancer by modulating some EMT-related processes. And in this study, evidences were provided to support a role for miR-429 as a novel target suppressing invasion and migration of human cervical cancer cells through modulation of its targeting genes ZEB1 and CRKL. Taken together, our data indicate that miR-429 plays a pivotal role in cervical cancer progression, which is a potential therapeutic target for patients.

Wang F, Jiang C, Sun Q, et al.
Downregulation of miR‑429 and inhibition of cell migration and invasion in nasopharyngeal carcinoma.
Mol Med Rep. 2016; 13(4):3236-42 [PubMed] Related Publications
Viral, dietary and genetic factors have been implicated in nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC), however, the molecular mechanism underlying its pathogenesis remains to be fully elucidated. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been reported to be important in NPC tumorigenesis, with a previous miRNA microarray study showing the downregulation of miRNA (miR)‑429 in NPC cells. However, the possible mechanisms of action of miR‑429 have not been examined. In the present study, the expression profiles of miR‑429 were detected using reverse transcription‑quantitative polymerase chain reaction analysis in CNE‑1 and CNE‑2 cells, which are two generally used NPC cells with different degrees of differentiation. Subsequently, cell proliferation, invasion and migration were analyzed in miR‑429‑overexpressing CNE‑2 cells, and the modulatory function of miR‑429 was also investigated using two target genes, zinc finger E‑Box‑binding homeobox 1 (ZEB1) and CRK‑like (CRKL), by transfection with miR‑429 mimic or anti‑miR‑429. Significant changes in the expression of miR‑429 were detected, particularly in low‑differentiated CNE‑2 cells, with higher levels of epidemicity and malignancy. Additional results revealed that miR‑429 inhibited the invasion and migration of the CNE‑2 cells, whereas no significant effect on cell growth was observed. In addition, the mRNA and protein expression levels of the two target genes, ZEB1 and CRKL, were negatively regulated by miR‑429, demonstrated through gain‑of‑function and loss‑of‑function investigations, indicating that these two functional downstream targets may be involved in the inhibitory effects of miR‑429 on NPC migration and invasion. miR‑429 may act as a negative regulatory factor of NPC tumorigenesis, involving the functions of its downstream targets, ZEB1 and CRKL. The results suggested miR‑429 as a potential candidate for miRNA‑based prognosis or therapy against NPC.

Ghosh A, Ghosh A, Datta S, et al.
Hepatic miR-126 is a potential plasma biomarker for detection of hepatitis B virus infected hepatocellular carcinoma.
Int J Cancer. 2016; 138(11):2732-44 [PubMed] Related Publications
Controversies about the origin of circulating miRNAs have encouraged us to identify organ specific circulating miRNAs as disease biomarkers. To identify liver-specific miRNAs for hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), global expression profiling of miRNAs in liver tissue of HBV-HCC and HBV-control with no or mild fibrosis was evaluated. A total of 40 differentially expressed miRNAs were identified in HCC. Among ten highly altered miRNAs, six miRNAs were successfully validated in tissues, whereas only two miRNAs, miR-126 and miR-142-3p showed increased expression in plasma of HBV-HCC compared to HBV-non-HCC patients. Subsequently, ROC curve analysis revealed that neither miR-126 nor miR-142-3p performed better than AFP in discriminating HCC from non-HCC while combination of each with AFP showed significantly higher efficiency rather than AFP alone (AUC: 0.922, 0.908 vs. 0.88; sensitivity: 0.84, 0.86 vs. 0.82 and specificity: 0.92, 0.94 vs. 0.86 respectively). Interestingly, triple combination of markers (miR-126 + miR-142-3p + AFP) showed no additive effect on efficiency (AUC: 0.925) over the dual combination. Again, the expression of only miR-126 was noticed significantly higher in HBV-HCC patients with low-AFP [<250 ng/ml] compared to either non-HCC or liver cirrhosis (AUC: 0.77, 0.64, respectively). Furthermore, no alteration in expression of mir-126 in HCV-HCC or non-viral-HCC revealed that miR-126 + AFP might be specific to HBV-HCC. To understand the physiological role of these two miRNAs in hepato-carcinogenesis, target genes related to cancer pathways (APAF1, APC2, CDKN2A, IRS1, CRKL, LIFR, EGR2) were verified. Thus, combination of circulating miR-126 + AFP is a promising noninvasive diagnostic biomarker for HBV-HCC and may be useful in the management of HCC patients.

Ungewiss C, Rizvi ZH, Roybal JD, et al.
The microRNA-200/Zeb1 axis regulates ECM-dependent β1-integrin/FAK signaling, cancer cell invasion and metastasis through CRKL.
Sci Rep. 2016; 6:18652 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Tumor cell metastasis is a complex process that has been mechanistically linked to the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT). The double-negative feedback loop between the microRNA-200 family and the Zeb1 transcriptional repressor is a master EMT regulator, but there is incomplete understanding of how miR-200 suppresses invasion. Our recent efforts have focused on the tumor cell-matrix interactions essential to tumor cell activation. Herein we utilized both our Kras/p53 mutant mouse model and human lung cancer cell lines to demonstrate that upon miR-200 loss integrin β1-collagen I interactions drive 3D in vitro migration/invasion and in vivo metastases. Zeb1-dependent EMT enhances tumor cell responsiveness to the ECM composition and activates FAK/Src pathway signaling by de-repression of the direct miR-200 target, CRKL. We demonstrate that CRKL serves as an adaptor molecule to facilitate focal adhesion formation, mediates outside-in signaling through Itgβ1 to drive cell invasion, and inside-out signaling that maintains tumor cell-matrix contacts required for cell invasion. Importantly, CRKL levels in pan-cancer TCGA analyses were predictive of survival and CRKL knockdown suppressed experimental metastases in vivo without affecting primary tumor growth. Our findings highlight the critical ECM-tumor cell interactions regulated by miR-200/Zeb1-dependent EMT that activate intracellular signaling pathways responsible for tumor cell invasion and metastasis.

Luo LY, Hahn WC
Oncogenic Signaling Adaptor Proteins.
J Genet Genomics. 2015; 42(10):521-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Signal transduction pathways activated by receptor tyrosine kinases (RTK) play a critical role in many aspects of cell function. Adaptor proteins serve an important scaffolding function that facilitates key signaling transduction events downstream of RTKs. Recent work integrating both structural and functional genomic approaches has identified several adaptor proteins as new oncogenes. In this review, we focus on the discovery, structure and function, and therapeutic implication of three of these adaptor oncogenes, CRKL, GAB2, and FRS2. Each of the three genes is recurrently amplified in lung adenocarcinoma or ovarian cancer, and is essential to cancer cell lines that harbor such amplification. Overexpression of each gene is able to transform immortalized human cell lines in in vitro or in vivo models. These observations identify adaptor protein as a distinct class of oncogenes and potential therapeutic targets.

Murali R, Chandramohan R, Möller I, et al.
Targeted massively parallel sequencing of angiosarcomas reveals frequent activation of the mitogen activated protein kinase pathway.
Oncotarget. 2015; 6(34):36041-52 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Angiosarcomas are rare malignant mesenchymal tumors of endothelial differentiation. The clinical behavior is usually aggressive and the prognosis for patients with advanced disease is poor with no effective therapies. The genetic bases of these tumors have been partially revealed in recent studies reporting genetic alterations such as amplifications of MYC (primarily in radiation-associated angiosarcomas), inactivating mutations in PTPRB and R707Q hotspot mutations of PLCG1. Here, we performed a comprehensive genomic analysis of 34 angiosarcomas using a clinically-approved, hybridization-based targeted next-generation sequencing assay for 341 well-established oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes. Over half of the angiosarcomas (n = 18, 53%) harbored genetic alterations affecting the MAPK pathway, involving mutations in KRAS, HRAS, NRAS, BRAF, MAPK1 and NF1, or amplifications in MAPK1/CRKL, CRAF or BRAF. The most frequently detected genetic aberrations were mutations in TP53 in 12 tumors(35%) and losses of CDKN2A in9 tumors (26%). MYC amplifications were generally mutually exclusive of TP53 alterations and CDKN2A loss and were identified in 8 tumors (24%), most of which (n = 7, 88%) arose post-irradiation. Previously reported mutations in PTPRB (n = 10, 29%) and one (3%) PLCG1 R707Q mutation were also identified. Our results demonstrate that angiosarcomas are a genetically heterogeneous group of tumors, harboring a wide range of genetic alterations. The high frequency of genetic events affecting the MAPK pathway suggests that targeted therapies inhibiting MAPK signaling may be promising therapeutic avenues in patients with advanced angiosarcomas.

Tamura M, Sasaki Y, Kobashi K, et al.
CRKL oncogene is downregulated by p53 through miR-200s.
Cancer Sci. 2015; 106(8):1033-40 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Tumor suppressive miRNAs that target oncogenes are frequently downregulated in cancers, and this downregulation leads to oncogene pathway activation. Thus, tumor suppressive miRNAs and their target oncogenes have been proposed as useful targets in cancer treatment. miR-200 family downregulation has been reported in cancer progression and metastasis. The miR-200 family consists of two gene clusters, miR-200b/200a/429 and miR-200c/141, which are located on human chromosomes 1 and 12, respectively. Here, we identified that p53 response elements are located around both clusters of the miR-200 family and confirmed that miR-200s are transcriptional targets of the p53 family. In silico analyses of miRNA targets established the CRKL oncogene as a potential target for miR-200b/200c/429. Moreover, miR-200b/200c/429 inhibited CRKL mRNA and protein expression by directly targeting its 3'-UTR region. Importantly, endogenous CRKL expression was decreased in cancer cells through the introduction of p53 family and endogenous p53 activation. Moreover, the downregulation of CRKL by siRNA inhibited cancer cell growth. The Oncomine database demonstrates that CRKL is overexpressed in a subset of cancer types. Furthermore, CRKL is significantly overexpressed in primary breast cancer tissues harboring mutant TP53. Our results demonstrate that the p53 target miR-200b/200c/429 miRNAs are negative regulators of the CRKL oncogene.

Han G, Wu D, Yang Y, et al.
CrkL meditates CCL20/CCR6-induced EMT in gastric cancer.
Cytokine. 2015; 76(2):163-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: In recent years, Crk-like adapter protein (CrkL) has been identified as a key regulator in the epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition (EMT). However, the molecular mechanisms underlying the CC chemokine receptor 6 (CCR6) and chemokine (C-C motif) ligand 20 (CCL20)-induced EMT in gastric cancer are still unclear.
METHODS: We conducted the immunohistochemistry and immunoblotting to detect the expression of CCR6 and CrkL in 90 cases of gastric cancer tissues and five kinds of cell lines. And then, gastric cancer cells were subjected to small interfering RNA (siRNA) treatment and in vitro assay.
RESULTS: Both CCR6 and CrkL were aberrantly expressed in gastric cancer specimens and closely correlated with differentiation of cell lines. The expression of CCR6 and CrkL was also significantly associated with metastasis, stage, and poor prognosis of gastric cancer. In addition, we validated CCL20 activated the expression of p-CrkL, p-Erk1/2, p-Akt, vimentin, N-cadherin and MMP2 in MGC803 cells in a dose-dependent manner. However, si-CrkL abrogated the CCL20-induced p-Erk1/2, vimentin, N-cadherin and MMP2 expression. Most importantly, the knockdown of CrkL decreased migration and invasion of MGC803 cells.
CONCLUSIONS: CrkL mediates CCL20/CCR6-induced EMT via Akt pathway, instead of Erk1/2 pathway in development of gastric cancer, which indicated CCL20/CCR6-CrkL-Erk1/2-EMT pathway may be targeted to antagonize the progression of gastric cancer.

Shagisultanova E, Gaponova AV, Gabbasov R, et al.
Preclinical and clinical studies of the NEDD9 scaffold protein in cancer and other diseases.
Gene. 2015; 567(1):1-11 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Cancer progression requires a significant reprogramming of cellular signaling to support the essential tumor-specific processes that include hyperproliferation, invasion (for solid tumors) and survival of metastatic colonies. NEDD9 (also known as CasL and HEF1) encodes a multi-domain scaffolding protein that assembles signaling complexes regulating multiple cellular processes relevant to cancer. These include responsiveness to signals emanating from the T and B cell receptors, integrins, chemokine receptors, and receptor tyrosine kinases, as well as cytoplasmic oncogenes such as BCR-ABL and FAK- and SRC-family kinases. Downstream, NEDD9 regulation of partners including CRKL, WAVE, PI3K/AKT, ERK, E-cadherin, Aurora-A (AURKA), HDAC6, and others allow NEDD9 to influence functions as pleiotropic as migration, invasion, survival, ciliary resorption, and mitosis. In this review, we summarize a growing body of preclinical and clinical data that indicate that while NEDD9 is itself non-oncogenic, changes in expression of NEDD9 (most commonly elevation of expression) are common features of tumors, and directly impact tumor aggressiveness, metastasis, and response to at least some targeted agents inhibiting NEDD9-interacting proteins. These data strongly support the relevance of further development of NEDD9 as a biomarker for therapeutic resistance. Finally, we briefly discuss emerging evidence supporting involvement of NEDD9 in additional pathological conditions, including stroke and polycystic kidney disease.

Aljedai A, Buckle AM, Hiwarkar P, Syed F
Potential role of Notch signalling in CD34+ chronic myeloid leukaemia cells: cross-talk between Notch and BCR-ABL.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(4):e0123016 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Notch signalling is critical for haemopoietic stem cell (HSC) self-renewal and survival. The role of Notch signalling has been reported recently in chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) - a stem cell disease characterized by BCR-ABL tyrosine kinase activation. Therefore, we studied the relationship between BCR-ABL and Notch signalling and assessed the expression patterns of Notch and its downstream target Hes1 in CD34+ stem and progenitor cells from chronic-phase CML patients and bone marrow (BM) from normal subjects (NBM). We found significant upregulation (p<0.05) of Notch1, Notch2 and Hes1 on the most primitive CD34+Thy+ subset of CML CD34+ cells suggesting that active Notch signalling in CML primitive progenitors. In addition, Notch1 was also expressed in distinct lymphoid and myeloid progenitors within the CD34+ population of primary CML cells. To further delineate the possible role and interactions of Notch with BCR-ABL in CD34+ primary cells from chronic-phase CML, we used P-crkl detection as a surrogate assay of BCR-ABL tyrosine kinase activity. Our data revealed that Imatinib (IM) induced BCR-ABL inhibition results in significant (p<0.05) upregulation of Notch activity, assessed by Hes1 expression. Similarly, inhibition of Notch leads to hyperactivation of BCR-ABL. This antagonistic relationship between Notch and BCR-ABL signalling was confirmed in K562 and ALL-SIL cell lines. In K562, we further validated this antagonistic relationship by inhibiting histone deacetylase (HDAC) - an effector pathway of Hes1, using valproic acid (VPA) - a HDAC inhibitor. Finally, we also confirmed the potential antagonism between Notch and BCR/ABL in In Vivo, using publically available GSE-database, by analysing gene expression profile of paired samples from chronic-phase CML patients pre- and post-Imatinib therapy. Thus, we have demonstrated an antagonistic relationship between Notch and BCR-ABL in CML. A combined inhibition of Notch and BCR-ABL may therefore provide superior clinical response over tyrosine-kinase inhibitor monotherapy by targeting both quiescent leukaemic stem cells and differentiated leukaemic cells and hence must be explored.

Nizard P, Ezan F, Bonnier D, et al.
Integrative analysis of high-throughput RNAi screen data identifies the FER and CRKL tyrosine kinases as new regulators of the mitogenic ERK-dependent pathways in transformed cells.
BMC Genomics. 2014; 15:1169 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Cell proliferation is a hallmark of cancer and depends on complex signaling networks that are chiefly supported by protein kinase activities. Therapeutic strategies have been used to target specific kinases but new methods are required to identify combined targets and improve treatment. Here, we propose a small interfering RNA genetic screen and an integrative approach to identify kinase networks involved in the proliferation of cancer cells.
RESULTS: The functional siRNA screen of 714 kinases in HeLa cells identified 91 kinases implicated in the regulation of cell growth, most of them never being reported in previous whole-genome siRNA screens. Based on gene ontology annotations, we have further discriminated between two classes of kinases that, when suppressed, result in alterations of the mitotic index and provoke cell-cycle arrest. Extinguished kinases that lead to a low mitotic index mostly include kinases implicated in cytosolic signaling. In contrast, extinguished kinases that result in a high mitotic index mostly include kinases implicated in cell division. By mapping hit kinases in the PhosphPOINT phosphoprotein database, we generated scale-free networks consisting of 449 and 661 protein-protein interactions for kinases from low MI and high MI groups, respectively. Further analyses of the kinase interactomes revealed specific modules such as FER- and CRKL-containing modules that connect three members of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) family, suggesting a tight control of the mitogenic EGF-dependent pathway. Based on experimental studies, we confirm the involvement of these two kinases in the regulation of tumor cell growth.
CONCLUSION: Based on a combined approach of large kinome-wide siRNA screens and ontology annotations, our study identifies for the first time two kinase groups differentially implicated in the control of cell proliferation. We further demonstrate that integrative analysis of the kinase interactome provides key information which can be used to facilitate or optimize target design for new therapeutic strategies. The complete list of protein-protein interactions from the two functional kinase groups will provide a useful database for future investigations.

Lian X, Jiao Y, Yang Y, et al.
CrkL regulates SDF-1-induced breast cancer biology through balancing Erk1/2 and PI3K/Akt pathways.
Med Oncol. 2015; 32(1):411 [PubMed] Related Publications
The adapter protein CrkL is required for regulating the malignant potential of human cancers. However, the regulatory mechanisms of CrkL on the stromal cell-derived factor 1 (SDF-1)/CXCR4 signaling pathways in breast cancer are not well characterized. Here, CXCR4 and CrkL proteins were tested in breast cancer cell lines and 60 primary breast cancer tissues. In vitro, the roles of CrkL in SDF-1-induced MDA-MB-231 cell cycle, invasion and migration were investigated. In the present study, CXCR4 and CrkL were highly expressed in MCF-7, MDA-MB-231, MDA-MB-231HM MDA-MB-468 and tumor tissues (80 and 60 %, respectively) and closely correlated with lymph node metastasis. In vitro studies revealed that SDF-1 induced the activation of CrkL, Erk1/2, Akt and matrix metallopeptidase 9 (MMP9) in MDA-MB-231 cells. The si-CrkL treatment significantly down-regulated the phosphorylated Erk1/2 (p-Erk1/2) and MMP9, but up-regulated p-Akt, compared with control. Importantly, wound-healing and transwell invasion assays showed that si-CrkL significantly impaired the wound closure and inhibited the SDF-1-induced invasion; similarly, flow cytometry showed that si-CrkL affected cell cycle. In conclusion, these results suggest that CrkL plays a regulatory role in the SDF-1-induced Erk1/2 and PI3K/Akt pathways and further managed the invasion and migration of breast cancer cells. Thus, CrkL may be recommended as an interesting therapeutic target for breast cancer.

Ye ZB, Ma G, Zhao YH, et al.
miR-429 inhibits migration and invasion of breast cancer cells in vitro.
Int J Oncol. 2015; 46(2):531-8 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Accumulating evidence indicates that microRNAs (miRNAs) are involved in regulating cancer invasion and metastasis, and an increasing number of research demonstrates that miRNAs can promote or inhibit cell motility depending on genetic background of different cancers and the microenvironment. In the present study, we established an in vivo bone metastasis model of breast cancer by injecting MDA-MB-231 cells into the left ventricle of nude mice, and then screened the differentially expressed miRNAs between parental and bone-metastatic MDA-MB-231 cells using miRNA array. The results revealed that decreased expression of miR-429 was probably involved in negatively regulating bone metastasis of breast cancer cells. On the other hand, overexpression of miR-429 in MDA-MB-231 cells remarkably suppressed invasion in vitro. We identified ZEB1 and CRKL as potential targets of miR-429 by analyzing combined results from in silico search and global expression array of the same RNA samples. Immunoblot assay confirmed that miR-429 reduced their expression at protein level. Taken together, our results offer an opportunity for further understanding of the recondite mechanisms underlying the bone metastasis of breast cancer.

Fu L, Dong Q, Xie C, et al.
CRKL protein overexpression enhances cell proliferation and invasion in pancreatic cancer.
Tumour Biol. 2015; 36(2):1015-22 [PubMed] Related Publications
CRKL is an adapter protein which is overexpressed in many malignant tumors and plays crucial roles in tumor progression. However, expression pattern and biological roles of CRKL in pancreatic cancer have not been examined. In the present study, we found that CRKL expression in pancreatic cancer specimens was higher than that in normal pancreatic tissues. Colony formation assay and Matrigel invasion assay showed that the overexpression of CRKL in Bxpc3 and Capan2 cell lines with low endogenous expression increased cell proliferation and invasion. Flow cytometry showed that CRKL promoted cell proliferation by facilitating cell cycle. Further analysis of cell cycle- and invasion-related molecules showed that CRKL upregulated cyclin D1, cyclin A, matrix metalloproteinase 2 (MMP2) expression, and phosphorylated extracellular signal (ERK)-regulated kinase. In conclusion, our study demonstrated that CRKL was overexpressed in human pancreatic cancers and contributed to pancreatic cancer cell proliferation and invasion through ERK signaling.

Cheng S, Guo J, Yang Q, Han L
Crk-like adapter protein is required for TGF-β-induced AKT and ERK-signaling pathway in epithelial ovarian carcinomas.
Tumour Biol. 2015; 36(2):915-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
Crk-like adapter protein (CrkL) was identified as an important biomarker in epithelial ovarian carcinomas. At the same time, the transforming growth factor β (TGF-β) pathway plays a key role in oncogenesis of advanced cancers. However, more detailed regulation mechanisms are still unclear. So we investigated the role of CrkL in TGF-β pathways in epithelial ovarian carcinomas. The small interfering RNA (siRNA) was used to suppress CrkL in serous papillary cystic adenocarcinoma (SKOV-3) cell line, TGF-β downstream signal molecules AKT and ERK phosphorylation status was tested using the Western blot. Wound healing assay was used to evaluate the capacity of cell migration and proliferation. In this study, CrkL can be activated by TGF-β1 treatment and inhibited by siCrkL. CrkL knockdown markedly suppressed the phosphorylated ERK (p-ERK) as well as the phosphorylated AKT (p-AKT) (p < 0.001) compared with control or TGF-β1 alone. On the other hand, CrkL knockdown could significantly affect SKOV3 wound closure (p < 0.001) using wound healing assay compared to siControl. In conclusion, CrkL protein is required for TGF-β signal pathways through AKT and ERK pathway, which can mediate the development of epithelial ovarian carcinomas. CrkL plays a key regulation role in TGF-β signaling pathway of epithelial ovarian carcinomas, and this study suggested CrkL could be suggested as an efficient target in ovarian cancer treatment.

Kawai H, Matsushita H, Suzuki R, et al.
Functional analysis of the SEPT9-ABL1 chimeric fusion gene derived from T-prolymphocytic leukemia.
Leuk Res. 2014; 38(12):1451-9 [PubMed] Related Publications
We analyzed the function of a SEPT9-ABL1 fusion identified in a case of T-prolymphocytic leukemia with tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) resistance. Five isoforms with different N-termini, including SEPT9a-ABL1, SEPT9b-ABL1, SEPT9d-ABL1, SEPT9e-ABL1 and SEPT9f-ABL1, were detected in the leukemic cells. All isoforms except SEPT9d-ABL1 are localized in the cytoplasm, undergo autophosphorylation and phosphorylate the downstream targets, STAT-5 and Crkl, and provided IL-3-independence and in vivo invasiveness to 32D cells. Additionally, these SEPT9-ABL1 isoforms were resistant to TKIs in vitro and in vivo, in comparison to BCR-ABL1. These findings demonstrated that SEPT9-ABL1 had oncogenic activity and conferred resistance to TKIs.

Li J, Chen Y, Chen B, et al.
Inhibition of 32Dp210 cells harboring T315I mutation by a novel derivative of emodin correlates with down-regulation of BCR-ABL and its downstream signaling pathways.
J Cancer Res Clin Oncol. 2015; 141(2):283-93 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: The clinical outcome of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) patients has been changed dramatically due to the development of imatinib (IM). However, the emergence of IM resistance, commonly associated with point mutations within the BCR-ABL kinase domain, remains a major clinical problem. Here, we investigated the effects of E35, a novel derivative of emodin, on the IM-resistant 32Dp210-T315I cells.
METHODS: Cell proliferation was measured by 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5 diphenyltetrazolium bromide and colony formation assay. Induction of apoptosis was confirmed by DNA fragmentation assay and annexin V/PI staining assay. Real-time quantitative PCR was used to access the BCR-ABL gene expression. Changes of related signaling molecules were detected through Western blot.
RESULTS: E35 was found to potently inhibit proliferation of 32Dp210-T315I cells with an average IC50 of 2.4 µM at 48 h. Colony formation was almost fully suppressed in 1.0 μM E35 group. DNA fragmentation and annexin V/PI staining assay exhibited the typical DNA fragmentation and the increased proportion of early apoptotic cells, respectively. The induction of apoptosis was associated with increase of Bax to Bcl-2 expression ratio and activation of caspase cascades involving decrease of pro-caspase 9 and pro-caspase 3 and increase of PARP cleavage. The protein expression of P210(BCR-ABL) and p-P210(BCR-ABL) was down-regulated in the presence of E35, although the mRNA levels remained almost unchanged. Moreover, the activation of the P210(BCR-ABL) downstream signaling pathways including CrkL, Akt/mTOR and MEK/ERK was fully suppressed by E35.
CONCLUSION: Our study indicated that E35 might be a potential antileukemia agent against IM resistance in CML.

Yang X, Lv W, Shi R, et al.
The clinical implications of Crk-like adaptor protein expression in papillary thyroid microcarcinoma.
Tumour Biol. 2014; 35(12):12435-40 [PubMed] Related Publications
Papillary thyroid microcarcinoma (PMC) is the most common subtype of thyroid carcinomas with satisfactory prognosis. Crk-like (CrkL) adaptor protein was identified in the development of many carcinomas. However, the clinical implications of CrkL protein in PMC were still unknown. Here, we conducted immunohistochemistry to test and analyze CrkL expression in papillary thyroid carcinoma (PTC) (50 cases), PMC (50 cases), and nodular goiter (50 cases), and then western blot further identified the expression of CrkL proteins. In our present study, the positive rate and the mean optical density (MOD) value of CrkL expression in PTC and PMC tissues were statistically significantly different, compared with nodular goiter (p = 0.021, 0.037) and normal thyroid tissues (p = 0.003, 0.009), respectively. In addition, CrkL expression was not associated with age, gender, and tumor number. Conversely, significant differences between CrkL expression and metastasis (p < 0.01) and violation of capsule (p < 0.01) were observed. Notably, western blot indeed identified that the metastasis group of either PTC or PMC tissues had about twofold increased expression of CrkL compared with their non-metastasis groups (p < 0.05). In conclusion, CrkL is highly expressed in papillary thyroid carcinoma and papillary thyroid microcarcinoma and closely correlated to metastasis. Therefore, it is essential to carry out neck lymph node clearance in patients with papillary thyroid microcarcinoma.

Cai J, Wu G, Tan X, et al.
Transferred BCR/ABL DNA from K562 extracellular vesicles causes chronic myeloid leukemia in immunodeficient mice.
PLoS One. 2014; 9(8):e105200 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Our previous study showed that besides mRNAs and microRNAs, there are DNA fragments within extracellular vesicles (EVs). The BCR/ABL hybrid gene, involved in the pathogenesis of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), could be transferred from K562 EVs to neutrophils and decrease their phagocytic activity in vitro. Our present study provides evidence that BCR/ABL DNAs transferred from EVs have pathophysiological significance in vivo. Two months after injection of K562 EVs into the tail vein of Sprague-Dawley (SD) rats, they showed some characteristics of CML, e.g., feeble, febrile, and thin, with splenomegaly and neutrophilia but with reduced neutrophil phagocytic activity. These findings were also observed in immunodeficient NOD/SCID mice treated with K562 EVs; BCR/ABL mRNA and protein were found in their neutrophils. The administration of actinomycin D, an inhibitor of de novo mRNA synthesis, prevented the abnormalities caused by K562 EVs in NOD/SCID mice related to CML, including neutrophilia and bone marrow hyperplasia. As a specific inhibitor of tyrosine kinases, imatinib blocked the activity of tyrosine kinases and the expression of phospho-Crkl, induced by the de novo BCR/ABL protein caused by K562 EVs bearing BCR/ABL DNA. Our current study shows the pathophysiological significance of transferred tumor gene from EVs in vivo, which may represent an important mechanism for tumorigenesis, tumor progression, and metastasis.

Suda K, Mizuuchi H, Murakami I, et al.
CRKL amplification is rare as a mechanism for acquired resistance to kinase inhibitors in lung cancers with epidermal growth factor receptor mutation.
Lung Cancer. 2014; 85(2):147-51 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) often provide dramatic responses in lung cancer patients with somatic EGFR mutation. However, acquired resistance to the drugs usually emerges within a few years. EGFR T790M secondary mutation, MET gene amplification, and transformation to small cell lung cancer are well-validated mechanisms that underlie acquisition of resistance to EGFR-TKIs. In addition, many molecular aberrations have been reported as candidates for mechanisms of acquired resistance to EGFR-TKIs. Amplification of the CRKL gene was reportedly observed in 1 of 11 lung cancer patients with EGFR mutations who acquired resistance to EGFR-TKI. This study is the first report, to our knowledge, that validated the role of CRKL gene amplification as a mechanism for acquisition of resistance to EGFR-TKIs.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We analyzed CRKL gene copy numbers, using a quantitative real-time PCR method, in 2 in vitro acquired-resistance cell-line models: 11 clinical samples from patients who developed acquired resistance to EGFR-TKIs, and 39 tumor specimens obtained from 7 autopsy patients whose cancers acquired resistance to EGFR-TKIs. Mutational status of EGFR codon 790 and copy numbers for the MET gene were also determined.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: In analysis for in vitro models, CRKL gene copy numbers were identical between EGFR-TKI-sensitive parental cells and their acquired resistant descendant cells. In addition, we found no clinical tumor specimens with acquired EGFR-TKI resistance to harbor amplified CRKL genes. These results indicate that CRKL gene amplification is rare in acquisition of resistance to EGFR-TKIs in lung cancer patients with EGFR mutations.

Frietsch JJ, Kastner C, Grunewald TG, et al.
LASP1 is a novel BCR-ABL substrate and a phosphorylation-dependent binding partner of CRKL in chronic myeloid leukemia.
Oncotarget. 2014; 5(14):5257-71 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is characterized by a genomic translocation generating a permanently active BCR-ABL oncogene with a complex pattern of atypically tyrosine-phosphorylated proteins that drive the malignant phenotype of CML. Recently, the LIM and SH3 domain protein 1 (LASP1) was identified as a component of a six gene signature that is strongly predictive for disease progression and relapse in CML patients. However, the underlying mechanisms why LASP1 expression correlates with dismal outcome remained unresolved. Here, we identified LASP1 as a novel and overexpressed direct substrate of BCR-ABL in CML. We demonstrate that LASP1 is specifically phosphorylated by BCR-ABL at tyrosine-171 in CML patients, which is abolished by tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy. Further studies revealed that LASP1 phosphorylation results in an association with CRKL - another specific BCR-ABL substrate and bona fide biomarker for BCR-ABL activity. pLASP1-Y171 binds to non-phosphorylated CRKL at its SH2 domain. Accordingly, the BCR-ABL-mediated pathophysiological hyper-phosphorylation of LASP1 in CML disrupts normal regulation of CRKL and LASP1, which likely has implications on downstream BCR-ABL signaling. Collectively, our results suggest that LASP1 phosphorylation might serve as an additional candidate biomarker for assessment of BCR-ABL activity and provide a first step toward a molecular understanding of LASP1 function in CML.

Min H, Han D, Kim Y, et al.
Label-free quantitative proteomics and N-terminal analysis of human metastatic lung cancer cells.
Mol Cells. 2014; 37(6):457-66 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Proteomic analysis is helpful in identifying cancer-associated proteins that are differentially expressed and fragmented that can be annotated as dysregulated networks and pathways during metastasis. To examine meta-static process in lung cancer, we performed a proteomics study by label-free quantitative analysis and N-terminal analysis in 2 human non-small-cell lung cancer cell lines with disparate metastatic potentials-NCI--H1703 (primary cell, stage I) and NCI-H1755 (metastatic cell, stage IV). We identified 2130 proteins, 1355 of which were common to both cell lines. In the label-free quantitative analysis, we used the NSAF normalization method, resulting in 242 differential expressed proteins. For the N-terminal proteome analysis, 325 N-terminal peptides, including 45 novel fragments, were identified in the 2 cell lines. Based on two proteomic analysis, 11 quantitatively expressed proteins and 8 N-terminal peptides were enriched for the focal adhesion pathway. Most proteins from the quantitative analysis were upregulated in metastatic cancer cells, whereas novel fragment of CRKL was detected only in primary cancer cells. This study increases our understanding of the NSCLC metastasis proteome.

Wang F, Wang XK, Shi CJ, et al.
Nilotinib enhances the efficacy of conventional chemotherapeutic drugs in CD34⁺CD38⁻ stem cells and ABC transporter overexpressing leukemia cells.
Molecules. 2014; 19(3):3356-75 [PubMed] Related Publications
Incomplete chemotherapeutic eradication of leukemic CD34⁺CD38⁻ stem cells is likely to result in disease relapse. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of nilotinib on eradicating leukemia stem cells and enhancing the efficacy of chemotherapeutic agents. Our results showed that ABCB1 and ABCG2 were preferentially expressed in leukemic CD34⁺CD38⁻ cells. Nilotinib significantly enhanced the cytotoxicity of doxorubicin and mitoxantrone in CD34⁺CD38⁻ cells and led to increased apoptosis. Moreover, nilotinib strongly reversed multidrug resistance and increased the intracellular accumulation of rhodamine 123 in primary leukemic blasts overexpressing ABCB1 and/or ABCG2. Studies with ABC transporter-overexpressing carcinoma cell models confirmed that nilotinib effectively reversed ABCB1- and ABCG2-mediated drug resistance, while showed no significant reversal effect on ABCC1- and ABCC4-mediated drug resistance. Results from cytotoxicity assays showed that CD34⁺CD38⁻ cells exhibited moderate resistance (2.41-fold) to nilotinib, compared with parental K562 cells. Furthermore, nilotinib was less effective in blocking the phosphorylation of Bcr-Abl and CrkL (a substrate of Bcr-Abl kinase) in CD34⁺CD38⁻ cells. Taken together, these data suggest that nilotinib particularly targets CD34⁺CD38⁻ stem cells and MDR leukemia cells, and effectively enhances the efficacy of chemotherapeutic drugs by blocking the efflux function of ABC transporters.

Brown S, Hutchinson CV, Aspinall-O'Dea M, et al.
Monocyte-derived dendritic cells from chronic myeloid leukaemia have abnormal maturation and cytoskeletal function that is associated with defective localisation and signalling by normal ABL1 protein.
Eur J Haematol. 2014; 93(2):96-102 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Mature dendritic cells (DCs) may be derived from the BCR/ABL1 expressing monocytes in chronic myeloid leukaemia. These cells have potential therapeutic applications, but are recognised to have defective function. In normal DCs, activation and maturation depend on ABL1 dependent signals. We therefore tested the hypothesis that in the DCs of chronic myeloid leukaemia, the presence of the BCR/ABL1 molecule disrupts normal ABL1 signal pathways, and contributes to the observed functional defects of the cells.
METHODS: We employed in vitro culture of clinical samples, combining microscopic and biochemical techniques with a phosphoproteomic approach to compare and characterise DCs from normal individuals and chronic myeloid leukaemia patients.
RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS: We identified an altered intracellular localisation for ABL1 within DCs derived from the monocytes of chronic myeloid leukaemia. The protein was found in the perinuclear region co-distributed with the adapter-protein CRKL and the BCR/ABL1 protein. This altered distribution was associated with defective generation of ABL1-dependent maturation signals, and a dislocation of ABL1 from the F-actin cytoskeleton. We suggest that abnormal ABL1-dependent signals contribute to the recognised functional defects affecting chronic myeloid leukaemia DCs.

Wu LX, Wu Y, Chen RJ, et al.
Curcumin derivative C817 inhibits proliferation of imatinib-resistant chronic myeloid leukemia cells with wild-type or mutant Bcr-Abl in vitro.
Acta Pharmacol Sin. 2014; 35(3):401-9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
AIM: To find new kinase inhibitors that overcome the imatinib resistance in treatment of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), we synthesized C817, a novel derivative of curcumin, and tested its activities against wild-type (WT) and imatinib-resistant mutant Abl kinases, as well as in imatinib-sensitive and resistant CML cells in vitro.
METHODS: 32D cells harboring WT or mutant Abl kinases (nucleotide binding P-loop mutants Q252H, Y253F, and imatinib contact residue mutant T315I), as well as K562/G01 cells (with whole Bcr-Abl gene amplication) were tested. Kinase activity was measured using Kinase-Glo Luminescent Kinase Assay Platform in recombinant WT and mutant (Q252H, Y253F, and T315I) Abl kinases. Cell proliferation and apoptosis were examined using MTT assay and flow cytometry, respectively. The phosphorylation levels of Bcr-Abl initiated signaling proteins were analyzed using Western blotting. Colony forming units (CFU) growth and long term culture-initiating cells (LTC-ICs) were used to test the effects of C817 on human leukemia progenitor/stem cells.
RESULTS: C817 potently inhibited both WT and mutant (Q252H, Y253F, and T315I) Abl kinase activities in a non-ATP competitive manner with the values of IC₅₀ at low nanomole levels. In consistent with above results, C817 suppressed the growth of both imatinib-sensitive and resistant CML cells, including wild-type K562, K562/G01, 32D-T315I, 32D-Q252H, and 32D-Y253F cells with the values of IC₅₀ at low micromole levels. C817 (0.5 or 1 μmol/L) dose-dependently inhibited the phosphorylation of Bcr-Abl and downstream proteins STAT-5 and CrkL in imatinib-resistant K562/G01 cells. Furthermore, C817 significantly suppressed CFU growth and LTC-ICs, implicating that C817 could eradiate human leukemia progenitor/stem cells.
CONCLUSION: C817 is a promising compound for treatment of CML patients with Bcr-Abl kinase domain mutations that confer imatinib resistance.

Kumar S, Fajardo JE, Birge RB, Sriram G
Crk at the quarter century mark: perspectives in signaling and cancer.
J Cell Biochem. 2014; 115(5):819-25 [PubMed] Related Publications
The Crk adaptor protein, discovered 25 years ago as the transforming gene (v-crk) product encoded by the CT10 avian retrovirus, has made a great impact on the field of signal transduction. By encoding an oncoprotein that contained a viral gag protein fused to only SH2 and SH3 domains, v-Crk demonstrated the significance of SH2 and SH3 domains in oncogenic signaling by their virtue of binding in a sequence-specific context to organize and assemble protein networks. In more recent years, the cellular homologs of Crk (Crk II, Crk I, and CrkL) have been extensively studied, and shown to have critical functions in a wide spectrum of biological and pathological processes that include cell motility, invasion, survival, bacterial pathogenesis, and the efferocytosis of apoptotic cells. Clinically, Crk proteins are implicated in the aggressive behavior of human cancers, including adenocarcinomas of the lung, breast, and stomach, as well as in sarcomas and gliomas. Over-expression of Crk proteins in human cancers has led to a renewed interest in both their signal transduction pathways and mechanisms of up-regulation. This prospect summarizes recent developments in Crk biology, including new structural and biochemical roles for the atypical carboxyl-terminal SH3 (SH3C) domain, revelations regarding the molecular differences between Crk II and Crk L, and the significance of Crk expression in stratified human tumor samples.

Ding J, Romani J, Zaborski M, et al.
Inhibition of PI3K/mTOR overcomes nilotinib resistance in BCR-ABL1 positive leukemia cells through translational down-regulation of MDM2.
PLoS One. 2013; 8(12):e83510 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) is a cytogenetic disorder resulting from formation of the Philadelphia chromosome (Ph), that is, the t(9;22) chromosomal translocation and the formation of the BCR-ABL1 fusion protein. Tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKI), such as imatinib and nilotinib, have emerged as leading compounds with which to treat CML. t(9;22) is not restricted to CML, 20-30% of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) cases also carry the Ph. However, TKIs are not as effective in the treatment of Ph+ ALL as in CML. In this study, the Ph+ cell lines JURL-MK2 and SUP-B15 were used to investigate TKI resistance mechanisms and the sensitization of Ph+ tumor cells to TKI treatment. The annexin V/PI (propidium iodide) assay revealed that nilotinib induced apoptosis in JURL-MK2 cells, but not in SUP-B15 cells. Since there was no mutation in the tyrosine kinase domain of BCR-ABL1 in cell line SUP-B15, the cells were not generally unresponsive to TKI, as evidenced by dephosphorylation of the BCR-ABL1 downstream targets, Crk-like protein (CrkL) and Grb-associated binder-2 (GAB2). Resistance to apoptosis after nilotinib treatment was accompanied by the constitutive and nilotinib unresponsive activation of the phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K) pathway. Treatment of SUP-B15 cells with the dual PI3K/mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) inhibitor BEZ235 alone induced apoptosis in a low percentage of cells, while combining nilotinib and BEZ235 led to a synergistic effect. The main role of PI3K/mTOR inhibitor BEZ235 and the reason for apoptosis in the nilotinib-resistant cells was the block of the translational machinery, leading to the rapid downregulation of the anti-apoptotic protein MDM2 (human homolog of the murine double minute-2). These findings highlight MDM2 as a potential therapeutic target to increase TKI-mediated apoptosis and imply that the combination of PI3K/mTOR inhibitor and TKI might form a novel strategy to combat TKI-resistant BCR-ABL1 positive leukemia.

Wang J, Chen X, Li P, et al.
CRKL promotes cell proliferation in gastric cancer and is negatively regulated by miR-126.
Chem Biol Interact. 2013; 206(2):230-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
V-crk avian sarcoma virus CT10 oncogene homolog-like (CRKL) is a member of CRK family and act as an adaptor protein participating in intra-cellular signal transduction. The role of CRKL in gastric cancer (GC) remains unclear. In this study, we show that CRKL was aberrantly highly expressed in both GC tumor specimens and cell lines (SGC-7901, MKN-45, MKN-28 and SUN-16). The expression of CRKL was significantly correlated with GC clinicopathologic features including tumor size, local invasion, lymph node metastasis and TNM stages. Knock-down of CRKL in SGC-7901 cells induced a suppression of cell proliferation along with a significant arrest of cell cycle in G0/G1 phase, however, no significant influence was observed on cell apoptosis. We validate that miR-126, a suppressor in GC, was a negative regulator of CRKL by directly combining with the 3' untranslated region of CRKL mRNA, and over-expression of miR-126 inhibited the protein expression of CRKL significantly. These results suggest that CRKL may function as an oncogene in GC by promoting the GC cell proliferation, which provides us a likely biomarker and a potential target for GC prevention, diagnosis and therapeutic treatment. Moreover, the targeting relationship between CRKL and miR-126 partly reveals the mechanism of miR-126 on GC suppression.

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