Targeting type Iγ phosphatidylinositol phosphate kinase inhibits breast cancer metastasis

C. Chen, X. Wang, X. Xiong, Q. Liu, Y. Huang, Q. Xu, J. Hu, G. Ge, K. Ling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Most deaths from breast cancer are caused by metastasis, a complex behavior of cancer cells involving migration, invasion, survival and microenvironment manipulation. Type Iγ phosphatidylinositol phosphate kinase (PIPKIγ) regulates focal adhesion assembly and its phosphorylation at Y639 is critical for cell migration induced by EGF. However, the role of this lipid kinase in tumor metastasis remains unclear. Here we report that PIPKIγ is vital for breast cancer metastasis. Y639 of PIPKIγ can be phosphorylated by stimulation of EGF and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF), two promoting factors for breast cancer progression. Histological analysis revealed elevated Y639 phosphorylation of PIPKIγ in invasive ductal carcinoma lesions and suggested a positive correlation with tumor grade. Orthotopically transplanted PIPKIγ-depleted breast cancer cells showed substantially reduced growth and metastasis, as well as suppressed expression of multiple genes related to cell migration and microenvironment manipulation. Re-expression of wild-type PIPKIγ in PIPKIγ-depleted cells restored tumor growth and metastasis, reinforcing the importance of PIPKIγ in breast cancer progression. Y639-to-F or a kinase-dead mutant of PIPKIγ could not recover the diminished metastasis in PIPKIγ-depleted cancer cells, suggesting that Y639 phosphorylation and lipid kinase activity are both required for development of metastasis. Further analysis with in vitro assays indicated that depleting PIPKIγ inhibited cell proliferation, MMP9 secretion and cell migration and invasion, lending molecular mechanisms for the eliminated cancer progression. These results suggest that PIPKIγ, downstream of EGF and/or HGF receptor, participates in breast cancer progression from multiple aspects and deserves further studies to explore its potential as a therapeutic target.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4635-4646
Number of pages12
Issue number35
StatePublished - Aug 27 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


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