Background: The c-Src tyrosine kinase is a determinant of malignant cellular behavior in a variety of human cancers. We sought to determine the effect of suppressing c-Src expression on pancreatic adenocarcinoma chemosensitivity to gemcitabine.
Study design: PANC1, MIAPaCa2, BxPC3, and Capan2 pancreatic adenocarcinoma cell lines were studied. Expression of c-Src was determined by Western blot analysis. c-Src kinase activity was determined by in vitro kinase assay. RNA interference was used to suppress c-Src expression. Gemcitabine-induced cytotoxicity was determined by tetrazolium reduction assay and caspase profiling was performed. The effect of Src-specific siRNA on Akt activity was quantified.
Results: Src expression and kinase activity in cell lines were directly correlated with gemcitabine chemoresistance. c-Src-specific siRNA suppressed c-Src expression and kinase activity. c-Src-specific siRNA increased gemcitabine-induced, caspase-mediated apoptosis. Akt activity was decreased by suppression of c-Src expression.
Conclusions: c-Src is a determinant of pancreatic adenocarcinoma chemoresistance and represents a potential target for therapeutic intervention.