Dominant negative inhibitors of signalling through the phosphoinositol 3-kinase pathway for gene therapy of pancreatic cancer

Stoll, V.; Caheja, V.; Vassaux, G.; Downward, J.; Lemoine, N. R.
January 2005
Gut;Jan2005, Vol. 54 Issue 1, p109
Academic Journal
Background: Ras signolling is frequently aberrant in pancreatic cancer so that there is constitutive activation of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (P13K) and AKT/protein kinase B pathway, as well as the RAF/MEK/ERK pathway. Aims: In the present study we investigated the role of the PI3K/AKT pathway in malignant transformation of pancreatic cancer cells. Methods: A genetic approach was used to interfere with signal transduction in vitro and in vivo. RASN 17, a dominant negative mutant of RAS, was applied to inhibit the PI3K/AKT pathway upstream of P13K. The regulatory p85β subunit of P13K and the negative regulator PTEN were utilised to inhibit the pathway at the level of P13K, and AAA-AKT, a dominant negative mutant of AKT was employed to interfere with P13K/AKT signalling at the level of AKT. Results: Antiproliferative, proapoptotic, and anticancer effects were documented, showing that inhibition of the P13K pathway in these cell lines suppresses tumour cell growth in vitro and reduces growth in nude mice. Conclusions: The PI3K/AKT pathway represents a potential therapeutic target for pancreatic cancer, and gene therapy may be one approach to produce selective inhibition.


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