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Leukemia. 2010 Apr;24(4):721-8. doi: 10.1038/leu.2009.301. Epub 2010 Jan 28.

FES kinases are required for oncogenic FLT3 signaling.

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  • 1INSERM, UMR 891, Centre de Recherche en Cancérologie de Marseille, Laboratoire de Signalisation, Hématopoïèse et Mécanismes de l'Oncogenèse, Marseille, France.


The closely related non-receptor tyrosine kinases FEline Sarcoma (FES) and FEs Related (FER) are activated by cell surface receptors in hematopoietic cells. Despite the early description of oncogenic viral forms of fes, v-fes, and v-fps, the implication of FES and FER in human pathology is not known. We have recently shown that FES but not FER is necessary for oncogenic KIT receptor signaling. Here, we report that both FES and FER kinases are activated in primary acute myeloid leukemia (AML) blasts and in AML cell lines. FES and FER activation is dependent on FLT3 in cell lines harboring constitutively active FLT3 mutants. Moreover, both FES and FER proteins are critical for FLT3-internal tandem duplication (ITD) signaling and for cell proliferation in relevant AML cell lines. FER is required for cell cycle transitions, whereas FES seems necessary for cell survival. We concluded that FES and FER kinases mediate essential non-redundant functions downstream of FLT3-ITD.

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