Ack1 mediated AKT/PKB Tyrosine 176 Phosphorylation Regulates its Activation

Drug Discovery Program, Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, Florida, United States of America.
PLoS ONE (Impact Factor: 3.23). 03/2010; 5(3):e9646. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0009646
Source: PubMed


The AKT/PKB kinase is a key signaling component of one of the most frequently activated pathways in cancer and is a major target of cancer drug development. Most studies have focused on its activation by Receptor Tyrosine Kinase (RTK) mediated Phosphatidylinositol-3-OH kinase (PI3K) activation or loss of Phosphatase and Tensin homolog (PTEN). We have uncovered that growth factors binding to RTKs lead to activation of a non-receptor tyrosine kinase, Ack1 (also known as ACK or TNK2), which directly phosphorylates AKT at an evolutionarily conserved tyrosine 176 in the kinase domain. Tyr176-phosphorylated AKT localizes to the plasma membrane and promotes Thr308/Ser473-phosphorylation leading to AKT activation. Mice expressing activated Ack1 specifically in the prostate exhibit AKT Tyr176-phosphorylation and develop murine prostatic intraepithelial neoplasia (mPINs). Further, expression levels of Tyr176-phosphorylated-AKT and Tyr284-phosphorylated-Ack1 were positively correlated with the severity of disease progression, and inversely correlated with the survival of breast cancer patients. Thus, RTK/Ack1/AKT pathway provides a novel target for drug discovery.

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Available from: Rebecca S Cook
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    • "Akt can also be phosphorylated at Tyr176 by Ack1 upon activation of RTK by growth factors [46]. Mahajan and colleagues have shown that Akt Tyr176-phosphorylation is sufficient to drive its membrane localization and subsequent PDK1- and mTORC2-mediated Akt phosphorylation and activation. "
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    ABSTRACT: Akt regulates critical cellular processes including cell survival and proliferation, glucose metabolism, cell migration, cancer progression and metastasis through phosphorylation of a variety of downstream targets. The Akt pathway is one of the most prevalently hyperactivated signaling pathways in human cancer, thus, research deciphering molecular mechanisms which underlie the aberrant Akt activation has received enormous attention. The PI3K-dependent Akt serine/threonine phosphorylation by PDK1 and mTORC2 has long been thought to be the primary mechanism accounting for Akt activation. However, this regulation alone does not sufficiently explain how Akt hyperactivation can occur in tumors with normal levels of PI3K/PTEN activity. Mounting evidence demonstrates that aberrant Akt activation can be attributed to other posttranslational modifications, which include tyrosine phosphorylation, O-GlcNAcylation, as well as lysine modifications: ubiquitination, SUMOylation and acetylation. Among them, K63-linked ubiquitination has been shown to be a critical step for Akt signal activation by facilitating its membrane recruitment. Deficiency of E3 ligases responsible for growth factor-induced Akt activation leads to tumor suppression. Therefore, a comprehensive understanding of posttranslational modifications in Akt regulation will offer novel strategies for cancer therapy.
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    • "However, measurement of PIP3 production in cells is technically demanding and not easily amenable to high throughput screening assays. Although it has been suggested that recruitment of Akt protein to the plasma membrane could also occur through PIP3 independent mechanisms [6], the PH domain of Akt (about 100 amino acids) is highly specific for PIP3 and has been previously used, in fusion with a green fluorescent protein, to visualize PIP3 production at the plasma membrane using fluorescence microscopy [7], [8]. Using this specific domain, we recently developed a BRET-based assay that permits to monitor, in real time, in living cells, ligand-induced PIP3 production at the plasma membrane [9], [10]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Stimulation of tyrosine kinase receptors initiates a signaling cascade that activates PI3K. Activated PI3K uses PIP2 to generate PIP3, which recruit Akt to the plasma membrane through its pleckstrin homology (PH) domain, permitting its activation by PDKs. Activated Akt controls important biological functions, including cell metabolism, proliferation and survival. The PI3K pathway is therefore an attractive target for drug discovery. However, current assays for measurement of PIP3 production are technically demanding and not amenable to high-throughput screening. We have established a MCF-7-derived breast cancer cell line, that stably co-expresses the PH domain of Akt fused to Renilla luciferase and YFP fused to a membrane localization signal. This BRET biosensor pair permits to monitor, in real time, in living cells, PIP3 production at the plasma membrane upon stimulation by different ligands, including insulin, the insulin analogue glargine, IGF1, IGF2 and EGF. Moreover, several known inhibitors that target different steps of the PI3K/Akt pathway caused inhibition of ligand-induced BRET. Cetuximab, a humanized anti-EGF receptor monoclonal antibody used for the treatment of cancer, completely inhibited EGF-induced BRET, and the tyrosine kinase inhibitor tyrphostine AG1024 inhibited insulin effect on PIP3 production. Moreover, the effects of insulin and IGF1 were inhibited by molecules that inhibit PI3K catalytic activity or the interaction between PIP3 and the PH domain of Akt. Finally, we showed that human serum induced a dose-dependent increase in BRET signal, suggesting that this stable clone may be used as a prognostic tool to evaluate the PI3K stimulatory activity present in serum of human patients. We have thus established a cell line, suitable for the screening and/or the study of molecules with stimulatory or inhibitory activities on the PI3K/Akt pathway that will constitute a new tool for translational research in diabetes and cancer.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · PLoS ONE
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    • "The C-terminal half of the protein interacts with partners including clathrin, EGFR, ubiquitin, Nedd4 E3 ligase and Grb2 [5-8]. Recent work by Mahajan et al. shows that ACK1 phosphorylates AKT at Tyr 176, resulting in its activation [9]. Several reports have implicated ACK1 over-expression and amplification in tumorigenesis of different tissue types e.g. "
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    ABSTRACT: The advent of effective targeted therapeutics has led to increasing emphasis on precise biomarkers for accurate patient stratification. Here, we describe the role of ACK1, a non-receptor tyrosine kinase in abrogating migration and invasion in KRAS mutant lung adenocarcinoma. Bosutinib, which inhibits ACK1 at 2.7 nM IC50, was found to inhibit cell migration and invasion but not viability in a panel of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cell lines. Knockdown of ACK1 abrogated bosutinib-induced inhibition of cell migration and invasion specifically in KRAS mutant cells. This finding was further confirmed in an in vivo zebrafish metastatic model. Tissue microarray data on 210 Singaporean lung adenocarcinomas indicate that cytoplasmic ACK1 was significantly over-expressed relative to paired adjacent non-tumor tissue. Interestingly, ACK1 expression in "normal" tissue adjacent to tumour, but not tumour, was independently associated with poor overall and relapse-free survival. In conclusion, inhibition of ACK1 with bosutinib attenuates migration and invasion in the context of KRAS mutant NSCLC and may fulfil a therapeutic niche through combinatorial treatment approaches.
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