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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2006 Mar 3;341(1):73-81. Epub 2006 Jan 6.

Role of c-Src and focal adhesion kinase in progression and metastasis of estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer.

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Department of Pharmacology, Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, PA 17033, USA.


The non-receptor tyrosine kinases c-Src and focal adhesion kinase (Fak) mediate signal transduction pathways that regulate cell proliferation, survival, invasion, and metastasis. Here, we investigated whether c-Src and Fak are activated during progression of hormone-dependent breast cancer. Maximally active c-Src was overexpressed in a subset of tamoxifen-resistant variants and in metastases of recurrent hormone-treated breast cancer. Active Fak was also frequently observed in these tumors. We also show that estrogen receptor (ER) can bind to Fak and that estrogen can modulate Fak autophosphorylation supporting a cross-talk between these two pathways. Inhibition of c-Src activity blocked proliferation of all tamoxifen-resistant variants, suggesting that inhibitors of c-Src-Fak activity may delay or prevent progression and metastasis of ER-positive tumors. These studies also raise the possibility that fully active forms of c-Src and Fak in breast tumors may be biomarkers to predict tamoxifen resistance and/or risk of recurrence in ER-positive breast cancer.

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