Class Ia phosphoinositide 3-kinases (PI3Ks) mediate cell and tissue growth downstream of insulin, IGF-1 and other growth factors. Impairments in the ability of insulin to stimulate PI3K in liver and muscle results in insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, while genetic aberrations that result in hyper-activation of PI3K in epithelial tissues results in cancers. Activating mutations in PIK3CA, the gene encoding the p110? catalytic subunit of PI3K, are among the most frequent oncogenic occurrences in epithelial cancers, and inactivating mutations in PTEN, the phosphatase that degrades the lipid product of PI3K is among the most frequent tumor suppressor mutations. Previous research funded by this grant has helped to elucidate the biochemical mechanism by which PI3Ks are activated downstream of insulin and other growth factors and to define the downstream signaling pathway that control cell growth. However, much remains to be discovered. During the next granting period we will attempt to explain some recent surprising discoveries about regulation of PI3K in disease states.
The first aim i s evaluate the role of the PI-3, 4-P2 4-phosphatase, INPP4B in cellular regulation and tumor formation. During the previous granting period we discovered that INPP4B acts as a tumor suppressor in breast and ovarian cancers by dephosphorylating the lipid, PI-3, 4-P2. We will characterize mice with germline deleted and floxed-INPP4B in regard to tumor formation in the context of BRCA1 and TP53 deletions. We have also observed dramatic enhancement in macrophage phagocytosis in the INPP4B knockout mice and will further characterize the role of INPP4B in macrophage biology.
The second aim i s to evaluate the role of the p85 subunit of Class 1a PI3Ks in BRD7 function. Recently we discovered that the regulatory subunit of PI3K (p85?) forms a tight complex with the bromo-domain protein, BRD7, a protein that mediates p53- dependent stress responses. We will further characterize the BRD7/p85 complex and determine its role in p53 and swi/snf regulation of gene expression.
The final aim i s to evaluate the role of novel mutations in PIK3CA and PIK3R1 in endometrial cancers. We and others have found that while breast cancer have very high rates of mutations in the catalytic and helical domains of PIK3CA (H1047R and E545K) endometrial cancers have unusually high rates of mutations in the N-terminal p85-binding domain of PIK3CA (especially R88Q), an event rarely seen in breast cancer. Endometrial cancers also have frequent mutations in the gene encoding p85? (PIK3R1). We will attempt to understand the biochemical mechanism by which these mutations contribute to endometrial cancers.

Public Health Relevance

Defects in insulin-dependent stimulation of Phosphoinositide 3-Kinase (PI3K) result in insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes while activating mutations in PI3K result in cancers. More than twenty investigational drugs that target PI3K are currently in cancer clinical trials. The goal of this grant is to understand how PI3K is activated by insulin an growth factors and to determine how mutations in the gene encoding PI3K cause cancer.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Research Project (R01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Cellular Signaling and Regulatory Systems Study Section (CSRS)
Program Officer
Barski, Oleg
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
United States
Zip Code
Chiu, Yu-Hsin; Lee, Jennifer Y; Cantley, Lewis C (2014) BRD7, a tumor suppressor, interacts with p85? and regulates PI3K activity. Mol Cell 54:193-202
Fruman, David A; Cantley, Lewis C (2014) Idelalisib--a PI3K? inhibitor for B-cell cancers. N Engl J Med 370:1061-2
Park, Sang Won; Herrema, Hilde; Salazar, Mario et al. (2014) BRD7 regulates XBP1s' activity and glucose homeostasis through its interaction with the regulatory subunits of PI3K. Cell Metab 20:73-84
Liu, Pengda; Begley, Michael; Michowski, Wojciech et al. (2014) Cell-cycle-regulated activation of Akt kinase by phosphorylation at its carboxyl terminus. Nature 508:541-5
Mayer, Ingrid A; Abramson, Vandana G; Isakoff, Steven J et al. (2014) Stand up to cancer phase Ib study of pan-phosphoinositide-3-kinase inhibitor buparlisib with letrozole in estrogen receptor-positive/human epidermal growth factor receptor 2-negative metastatic breast cancer. J Clin Oncol 32:1202-9
Menon, Suchithra; Dibble, Christian C; Talbott, George et al. (2014) Spatial control of the TSC complex integrates insulin and nutrient regulation of mTORC1 at the lysosome. Cell 156:771-85
González-Billalabeitia, Enrique; Seitzer, Nina; Song, Su Jung et al. (2014) Vulnerabilities of PTEN-TP53-deficient prostate cancers to compound PARP-PI3K inhibition. Cancer Discov 4:896-904
Davis, Mindy I; Sasaki, Atsuo T; Shen, Min et al. (2013) A homogeneous, high-throughput assay for phosphatidylinositol 5-phosphate 4-kinase with a novel, rapid substrate preparation. PLoS One 8:e54127
Gallop, Jennifer L; Walrant, Astrid; Cantley, Lewis C et al. (2013) Phosphoinositides and membrane curvature switch the mode of actin polymerization via selective recruitment of toca-1 and Snx9. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 110:7193-8
Baker, Rachael; Lewis, Steven M; Sasaki, Atsuo T et al. (2013) Site-specific monoubiquitination activates Ras by impeding GTPase-activating protein function. Nat Struct Mol Biol 20:46-52

Showing the most recent 10 out of 112 publications