Akt kinase-interacting protein1, a novel therapeutic target for lung cancer with EGFR-activating and gatekeeper mutations
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Despite initial dramatic response, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) mutant lung cancer patients always acquire resistance to EGFR-tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs). Gatekeeper T790M mutation in EGFR is the most prevalent genetic alteration underlying acquired resistance to EGFR-TKI, and EGFR mutant lung cancer cells are reported to be addictive to EGFR/Akt signaling even after acquired T790M mutation. Here, we focused on Akt kinase-interacting protein1 (Aki1), a scaffold protein of PI3K (phosphoinositide 3-kinase)/PDK1 (3-phosphoinositide-dependent protein kinase)/Akt that determines receptor signal selectivity for non-mutated EGFR, and assessed its role in EGFR mutant lung cancer with or without gatekeeper T790M mutation. Cell line-based assays showed that Aki1 constitutively associates with mutant EGFR in lung cancer cells with (H1975) or without (PC-9 and HCC827) T790M gatekeeper mutation. Silencing of Aki1 induced apoptosis of EGFR mutant lung cancer cells. Treatment with Aki1 siRNA dramatically inhibited growth of H1975 cells in a xenograft model. Moreover, silencing of Aki1 further potentiated growth inhibitory effect of new generation EGFR-TKIs against H1975 cells in vitro. Aki1 was frequently expressed in tumor cells of EGFR mutant lung cancer patients (53/56 cases), including those with acquired resistance to EGFR-TKI treatment (7/7 cases). Our data suggest that Aki1 may be a critical mediator of survival signaling from mutant EGFR to Akt, and may therefore be an ideal target for EGFR mutant lung cancer patients, especially those with acquired EGFR-TKI resistance due to EGFR T790M gatekeeper mutation.Oncogene advance online publication, 8 October 2012; doi:10.1038/onc.2012.446.
Oncogene 32(37), 4427-4435, 2013-09-12
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