Author(s): Yoganathan TN, Costello P, Chen X, Jabali M, Yan J,
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Abstract Integrin-mediated cell adhesion is known to regulate gene expression through the activation of transcription factors. We have recently revealed that these activations are mediated through integrin-linked kinase (ILK). ILK is an ankyrin repeat-containing serine-threonine protein kinase that can interact directly with the cytoplasmic domain of the beta1 and beta3 integrin subunits and whose kinase activity is modulated by cell-extracellular matrix interactions. We have shown that ILK overexpression results in the translocation of beta-catenin to the nucleus, which then forms a complex formation with the lymphoid enhancer binding factor 1 (LEF-1) transcription factor, subsequently activating the transcriptional activity of promoters containing LEF-1 response elements. ILK phosphorylates the glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3), which inhibits GSK-3 activity. We have demonstrated that ILK stimulates activator protein-1 transcriptional activity through GSK-3 and the subsequent regulation of the c-Jun-DNA interaction. ILK also phosphorylates protein kinase B (PKB/Akt) and stimulates its activity. We have shown that ILK is an upstream effector of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase-dependent regulation of PKB/Akt. ILK has been shown to phosphorylate PKB/Akt on Ser-473 in vitro and in vivo. Our results clearly indicate that ILK is a key element in the regulation of integrin signaling as well as growth factor and Wnt signaling pathways. PTEN (phosphatase and tensin homolog detected on chromosome 10) is a tumor suppressor gene located on chromosome 10q23 that encodes a protein and phospholipid phosphatase. It is now estimated that inactivation mutants of PTEN exist in 60\% of all forms of solid tumors. Loss of expression or mutational inactivation of PTEN leads to the constitutive activation of PKB/Akt via enhanced phosphorylation of Thr-308 and Ser-473. We have demonstrated that the activity of ILK is constitutively elevated in PTEN mutant cells. A small molecule ILK inhibitor suppresses the phosphorylation of PKB at the Ser-473 but not the Thr-308 site in the PTEN mutant cells. These results indicate that inhibition of ILK may be of significant value in solid tumor therapy.
This article was published in Biochem Pharmacol
and referenced in Journal of Cancer Science & Therapy