Expression of active Akt protects against tamoxifen-induced apoptosis in MCF-7 Cells


  • Incheol Shin,

    1. Departments of Cancer Biology, Department of Life Science, Hanyang University, Seoul, Korea
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  • Carlos L. Arteaga

    1. Departments of Cancer Biology, Medicine, Breast Cancer Research Program, Vanderbilt-Ingram Comprehensive Cancer Center, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee, USA
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We investigated the effect of constitutive active Akt expression on anti-proliferative and apoptotic effect of tamoxifen in MCF-7 human breast cancer cells. Forced expression of AktDD (T308D, S473D) resulted in increased phosphorylation of GSK3β, a physiological substrate of Akt. When estrogen receptor (ER) mediated transcription was determined by luciferase assays, there was more than 2-fold increase in estradiol-dependent transcription in MCF-7 cells overexpressing AktDD (MCF-7 AktDD) compared to vector control cells (MCF-7 vec). MCF-7 AktDD cells showed increased proliferation in a medium containing charcoal stripped serum supplemented with estradiol. When the cell cycle profiles were examined, there was an increase in S-phase and a reduction in G1 phase in MCF-7 AktDD cells as compared to MCF-7 vec cells. Overexpression of AktDD also attenuated tamoxifen-mediated apoptosis. These results suggest that Akt could confer resistance to anti-estrogen mediated cell death and inhibition of proliferation. iubmb Life, 58: 664 - 669, 2006