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Cancer Res. 2003 Aug 15;63(16):4796-800.

Implication of protein kinase B/Akt and Bcl-2/Bcl-XL suppression by the farnesyl transferase inhibitor SCH66336 in apoptosis induction in squamous carcinoma cells.

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  • 1Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology, The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas 77030, USA.


The farnesyltransferase inhibitor SCH66336 exhibits antitumor activity in vitro and in vivo; however, its mechanism of action is still unresolved. We found that SCH66336 suppressed growth and induced apoptosis of human head and neck squamous carcinoma cells (HNSCC). SCH66336 suppressed protein kinase B/Akt activity as well as the phosphorylation of the Akt substrates glycogen synthase kinase (GSK)-3 beta, forkhead transcription factor, and BAD. Infection of SqCC/Y1 cells with an adenovirus that contained a constitutively active form of Akt rescued cells from SCH66336-induced apoptosis. These results suggest that SCH66336 is a potent apoptosis inducer in HNSCC cells and that it may act by suppressing the Akt pathway.

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