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Oncogene

Activation of ErbB3-PI3-kinase pathway is correlated with malignant phenotypes of adenocarcinomas.


PMID 12618754

Abstract

Signet-ring cell carcinomas are malignant dedifferentiated carcinomas, which are frequently found in the stomach. We previously demonstrated that a 200 kDa protein is often constitutively phosphorylated on tyrosine and bound to phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-kinase) in signet-ring cell carcinoma cells. In this study, we purified the 200 kDa protein from an extract of NUGC-4 cells, a cell line of signet-ring cell carcinoma, and identified it as ErbB3. ErbB3 was found to be phosphorylated selectively in dedifferentiated adenocarcinoma cell lines among various gastric cancer cell lines. Expression of a constitutively active chimeric receptor consisting of ErbB2 and ErbB3 in HCC2998 cells, a highly differentiated adenocarcinoma cell line, revealed that the signaling triggered by phosphorylation of ErbB3 was important for dedifferentiated phenotypes such as loss of cell-cell interaction and high expression of MUC1/DF3 antigen, a marker of the malignant tumors. Taken together, activation of ErbB3 pathway may contribute to the development of dedifferentiated carcinomas.

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