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Cancer Res. 2003 Dec 1;63(23):8132-7.

Functional analysis of mutations within the kinase activation segment of B-Raf in human colorectal tumors.

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Division of Gastroenterology, The Institute for Adult Diseases, Asahi Life Foundation, Tokyo, Japan.


Mutations in the B-Raf gene have been reported in a number of human cancers, including colorectal carcinoma. More than 80% of the B-Raf mutations were V599E. Although other mutations have been reported, their functional consequences were unclear. Here, we examined the effect of colon tumor-associated B-Raf mutations within the kinase activation segment, including V599E, on extracellular signal-regulated kinase (Erk) and nuclear factor kappaB (NFkappaB) signaling, and on the transformation of NIH3T3 fibroblasts. Among the six mutations examined, only the B-Raf V599E and K600E mutations greatly increased Erk and NFkappaB signaling, and the transformation of NIH3T3 cells. The B-Raf F594L mutation moderately elevated Erk signaling and NIH3T3 transformation, but did not significantly increase NFkappaB signaling. Although the basal kinase activity of the B-Raf T598I mutant was comparable with that of wild-type, its oncogenic Ras-induced kinase activity was decreased to 60% of wild-type activity. The B-Raf D593V and G595R mutants showed severely reduced kinase activity and affected neither NFkappaB signaling nor NIH3T3 transforming activity. These results suggest that the B-Raf activation segment mutations other than V599E reported in colorectal tumors do not necessarily contribute to carcinogenesis by increasing kinase and transforming activities.

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