Copy number loss of PIK3R1 (p85α) most commonly occurs in ovarian cancer among all cancer types. Here we report that ovarian cancer cells manifest a spectrum of tumorigenic phenotypes upon knockdown of PIK3R1. PIK3R1 loss activates AKT and p110-independent JAK2/STAT3 signaling through inducing changes in the phosphorylation of the docking protein Gab2, thereby relieving the negative inhibition on AKT and promoting the assembly of JAK2/STAT3 signalosome, respectively. Additional mechanisms leading to AKT activation include enhanced p110α kinase activity and a decrease in PTEN level. PIK3R1 loss renders ovarian cancer cells vulnerable to inhibition of AKT or JAK2/STAT3. The combination of AKT and STAT3 inhibitors significantly increases the anti-tumor effect compared to single-agent treatments. Together, our findings provide a rationale for mechanism-based therapeutic approach that targets tumors with loss of PIK3R1.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Physics and Astronomy(all)