Ras homologue enriched in brain is a critical target of farnesyltransferase inhibitors in non-small cell lung cancer cells

Hang Zheng, Anling Liu, Bin Liu, Minghui Li, Hailang Yu, Xiaojun Luo
Cancer Letters 2010 November 1, 297 (1): 117-25
The purpose of this work is to study mechanisms underlying anti-tumor effects of farnesyltransferase inhibitors (FTIs) in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). We demonstrate that mRNA and protein levels of Ras homologue enriched in brain (Rheb) are highly expressed both in NSCLC tissues and in NSCLC cell lines. Rheb expression levels correlate with phosphorylation of its downstream target S6 and the sensitivity of NSCLC cells to FTIs (R115777 and SCH66336)-induced growth inhibition and apoptosis. FTIs effectively and preferentially inhibited Rheb downstream signaling in NSCLC cells. Moreover, inhibition of Rheb functions by FTIs or dominant-negative Rheb mutants enhance the effects of cisplatin on NSCLC cells. Rheb-CSVL, a FTIs-resistant mutant, reduces the effects of FTIs on NSCLC cells. Our results suggest that Rheb is a critical target for FTIs therapy in NSCLC.

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