• LKB1;
  • STK11;
  • Peutz-Jeghers syndrome;
  • germline mutation;
  • somatic mutation


The human LKB gene (official HUGO symbol, STK11) encodes a serine/threonine protein kinase that is defective in patients with Peutz-Jeghers syndrome (PJS). PJS is an autosomal dominantly inherited syndrome characterized by hamartomatous polyposis of the gastrointestinal tract and mucocutaneous pigmentation. To date, 145 different germline LKB1 mutations have been reported. The majority of the mutations lead to a truncated protein product. One mutational hotspot has been observed. A 1-bp deletion and a 1-bp insertion at the mononucleotide repeat (C6 repeat, c.837–c.842) between the codons 279–281 have been found in six and seven unrelated PJS families, respectively. However, these mutations account only for approximately 7% of all mutations identified in the PJS families (13/193). A review of the literature provides a total of 40 different somatic LKB1 mutations in 41 sporadic tumors and seven cancer cell lines. Mutations occur particularly in lung and colorectal cancer. Most of the somatic LKB1 mutations result in truncation of the protein. A mutational hotspot seems to be a C6 repeat accounting for 12.5% of all somatic mutations (6/48). These results are concordant with the germline mutation spectrum. However, the proportion of the missense mutations seems to be higher among the somatic mutations (45%) than among the germline mutations (21%), and only seven of the mutations are exactly the same in both of the mutation types. Hum Mutat 26(4), 291–297, 2005. © 2005 Wiley-Liss, Inc.