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Cancer Cell. 2009 May 5;15(5):353-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ccr.2009.04.004.

PI3K inhibition overcomes trastuzumab resistance: blockade of ErbB2/ErbB3 is not always enough.

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  • 1Friedrich Miescher Institute for Biomedical Research, Maulbeerstrasse 66, CH-4059 Basel, Switzerland.


Trastuzumab targets ErbB2 and is used for treating ErbB2-overexpressing breast cancers. In this issue of Cancer Cell, Junttila et al. show that trastuzumab disrupts ligand-independent ErbB2/ErbB3/PI3K complexes and blocks AKT signaling; if PI3K is mutated, complex disruption does not inhibit AKT, which explains why trastuzumab is ineffective in some tumors.

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