AKT crystal structure and AKT-specific inhibitors.

Department of Tumor Biology, Schering-Plough Research Institute, Kenilworth, NJ 07033, USA.
Oncogene (Impact Factor: 8.56). 12/2005; 24(50):7493-501. DOI: 10.1038/sj.onc.1209087
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT AKT kinases are attractive targets for small molecule drug discovery because of their key role in tumor cell survival/proliferation and their overexpression/activation in many human cancers. This review summarizes studies that support the rationale for targeting AKT kinases in new drug discovery efforts. Structural features of AKT kinase in its inactive and active states, as determined by crystal structure analysis, are described. Recent efforts in the development and biological evaluation of small molecule inhibitors of AKT, and the challenges remaining are summarized. Inhibitors targeting the ATP binding site, PH domain and protein substrate binding site, as well as isoform selective allosteric inhibitors are reviewed. Structure-based design using PKA mutants as surrogates and computer modeling in the discovery of selective inhibitors is discussed. The issues and challenges facing the development of different classes of inhibitors as therapeutics are also discussed.

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    ABSTRACT: GTPases and kinases are two predominant signaling modules that regulate cell fate. Dysregulation of Ras, a GTPase, and the three eponymous kinases that form key nodes of the associated phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate 3-kinase (PI3K)/AKT/mTOR pathway have been implicated in many cancers, including pancreatic cancer, a disease noted for its current lack of effective therapeutics. The K-Ras isoform of Ras is mutated in over 90% of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinomas (PDAC) and there is growing evidence linking aberrant PI3K/AKT/mTOR pathway activity to PDAC. Although these observations suggest that targeting one of these nodes might lead to more effective treatment options for patients with pancreatic and other cancers, the complex regulatory mechanisms and the number of sequence-conserved isoforms of these proteins have been viewed as significant barriers in drug development. Emerging insights into the allosteric regulatory mechanisms of these proteins suggest novel opportunities for development of selective allosteric inhibitors with fragment-based drug discovery (FBDD) helping make significant inroads. The fact that allosteric inhibitors of Ras and AKT are currently in pre-clinical development lends support to this approach. In this article, we will focus on the recent advances and merits of developing allosteric drugs targeting these two inter-related signaling pathways.
    Frontiers in Physiology 12/2014; 5:478. DOI:10.3389/fphys.2014.00478
  • Frontiers in Bioscience 01/2011; 16(1):517. DOI:10.2741/3702 · 4.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Akt kinase is a critical component of the PI3K/Akt signaling pathway, which is frequently over expressed in human cancers including breast. Therapeutic regimens for inhibiting breast cancer with aberrant Akt activity are essential. Here, we evaluated antitumor effect of a marine bacteria derived lipopeptide 'Iturin A' on human breast cancer in vitro and in vivo through disrupting Akt pathway. Proliferation of MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 breast cancer cells were significantly inhibited by Iturin A and it induced apoptosis as confirmed by increased Sub G1 populations, DNA fragmentation, morphological changes and western blot analysis. Furthermore, Iturin A inhibited EGF induced Akt phosphorylation (Ser473 and Thr308) and its downstream targets GSK3β and FoxO3a. Iturin A inactivated MAPK as well as Akt kinase leading to the translocation of FoxO3a to the nucleus. Gene silencing of Akt in MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 cells reduced the sensitivity of cancer cells to Iturin A. Interestingly, overexpression of Akt with Akt plasmid in cancer cells caused highly susceptible to induce apoptosis by Iturin A treatment. In a xenograft model, Iturin A inhibited tumor growth with reduced expressions of Ki-67, CD-31, P-Akt, P-GSK3β, P-FoxO3a and P-MAPK. Collectively, these findings imply that Iturin A has potential anticancer effect on breast cancer.
    Scientific Reports 03/2015; 5(10316). DOI:10.1038/srep10316 · 5.08 Impact Factor


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