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Cancer Res. 2009 Oct 1;69(19):7603-11. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-09-2066. Epub 2009 Sep 8.

Atypical protein kinase C{iota} is required for bronchioalveolar stem cell expansion and lung tumorigenesis.

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Departments of Cancer Biology and Pathology, Mayo Clinic Comprehensive Cancer Center, Jacksonville, Florida, USA.


Protein kinase Ciota (PKCiota) is an oncogene required for maintenance of the transformed phenotype of non-small cell lung cancer cells. However, the role of PKCiota in lung tumor development has not been investigated. To address this question, we established a mouse model in which oncogenic Kras(G12D) is activated by Cre-mediated recombination in the lung with or without simultaneous genetic loss of the mouse PKCiota gene, Prkci. Genetic loss of Prkci dramatically inhibits Kras-initiated hyperplasia and subsequent lung tumor formation in vivo. This effect correlates with a defect in the ability of Prkci-deficient bronchioalveolar stem cells to undergo Kras-mediated expansion and morphologic transformation in vitro and in vivo. Furthermore, the small molecule PKCiota inhibitor aurothiomalate inhibits Kras-mediated bronchioalveolar stem cell expansion and lung tumor growth in vivo. Thus, Prkci is required for oncogene-induced expansion and transformation of tumor-initiating lung stem cells. Furthermore, aurothiomalate is an effective antitumor agent that targets the tumor-initiating stem cell niche in vivo. These data have important implications for PKCiota as a therapeutic target and for the clinical use of aurothiomalate for lung cancer treatment.

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