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Int J Oncol. 2012 Mar;40(3):639-44. doi: 10.3892/ijo.2011.1312. Epub 2011 Dec 20.

Gene alterations in the PI3K/PTEN/AKT pathway as a mechanism of drug-resistance (review).

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Department of Biomedical Sciences, University of Catania, Catania, Italy.


The most common therapeutic approach for many cancers is chemotherapy. However, many patients relapse after treatment due to the development of chemoresistance. Recently, targeted therapies represent novel approaches to destroy cancer cells. The PI3K/PTEN/AKT pathway is a key signaling pathway involved in the regulation of cell growth. Dysregulated signaling of this pathway may be associated with activating mutations of PI3K-related genes. Analyses of these mutations reveal that they increase the PI3K signal, stimulate downstream Akt signaling, promote growth factor-independent growth and increase cell invasion and metastasis. In this review, we summarize the PI3K/PTEN/AKT pathway genetic alterations in cancer and their potential clinical applications.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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