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Mol Cell. 2013 Mar 28;49(6):1049-59. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2013.01.009. Epub 2013 Feb 7.

p58(IPK)-mediated attenuation of the proapoptotic PERK-CHOP pathway allows malignant progression upon low glucose.

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University of Lyon, 69000 Lyon, France.


As solid tumors expand, oxygen and nutrients become limiting owing to inadequate vascularization and diffusion. How malignant cells cope with this potentially lethal metabolic stress remains poorly understood. We found that glucose shortage associated with malignant progression triggers apoptosis through the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) unfolded protein response (UPR). ER stress is in part caused by reduced glucose flux through the hexosamine pathway. Deletion of the proapoptotic UPR effector CHOP in a mouse model of K-ras(G12V)-induced lung cancer increases tumor incidence, strongly supporting the notion that ER stress serves as a barrier to malignancy. Overcoming this barrier requires the selective attenuation of the PERK-CHOP arm of the UPR by the molecular chaperone p58(IPK). Furthermore, p58(IPK)-mediated adaptive response enables cells to benefit from the protective features of chronic UPR. Altogether, these results show that ER stress activation and p58(IPK) expression control the fate of malignant cells facing glucose shortage.

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