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Anticancer Res. 2001 Jul-Aug;21(4A):2733-8.

Role of MAP kinase pathways in primitive neuroectodermal tumors.

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Division of Neuro-oncology, Joseph Stokes Research Institute, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.


Mitogen-activated protein kinase and Phosphatidylinositol-3 kinase/Akt-mediated signaling pathways play a major role in controlling cell proliferation, differentiation and cell death. Phosphorylation and dephosphorylation of their specific Thr/Tyr residues is critical in determining their activity. We determined the expression pattern and activity of MAP kinases and Akt in Primitive Neuroectodermal Tumors (PNETs). The kinase activity of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) was higher in both primary tumors and cell lines, as evident from the increased phosphorylation of ERK1 and ERK2. We did not observe the activation of C-jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) or p38 MAPK The expression of Raf-1, a kinase acting upstream of ERK, was significantly increased in primary tumors compared to normal brain. The PI-3 kinase-activated phosphorylation of Akt was also higher in primary tumors. These results suggest that activation of the Raf-1/ERK module of the MAP kinase pathway play an important role in PNETs.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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