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Non-small cell lung cancers frequently express phosphorylated Akt; an immunohistochemical study

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Lee SH, Kim HS, Park WS, Kim SY, Lee KY, Kim SH, Lee JY, Yoo NJ. Non-small cell lung cancers frequently express phosphorylated Akt; an immunohistochemical study. APMIS 2002;110;587–92.

Mounting evidence suggests that the alterations of Akt/protein kinase B (PKB) play an important role in tumorigenesis. Phosphorylated Akt regulates many of the key effector molecules involved in apoptosis, angiogenesis, and cell cycle progression during tumorigenesis. The expression of phosphorylated Akt has been described in some human malignancies, but not in primary human lung cancer. In this study, to understand the role of Akt in lung tumorigenesis we analyzed the expression of phosphorylated Akt in 43 non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLCs) by immunohistochemistry. Phosphorylated Akt was detected either in the cytoplasm (23 cases) or nucleus (6 cases) in 29 of 43 NSCLCs (67.4%). Squamous cell carcinomas, adenocarcinomas, and bronchioloalveolar carcinomas expressed phosphorylated Akt in 68.2%, 61.5% and 75%, respectively. We also analyzed the phosphorylated Akt expression between primary NSCLCs and their corresponding nodal metastasis; the expression was not, however, different between the primary and metastatic lesions. Taken together, these results indicate that Akt 1 is frequently activated in NSCLCs, irrespective of the histological subtypes, and suggest that phosphorylated Akt may play a role in the development of NSCLC rather than in the progression of NSCLC.
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Keywords: Akt; apoptosis; non-small cell lung cancer; phosphorylation; tumorigenesis

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Pathology and 2: Clinical Pathology, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Korea

Publication date: 2002-08-01

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