Proto-oncogene TCL1: more than just a coactivator for Akt

FASEB J. 2007 Aug;21(10):2273-84. doi: 10.1096/fj.06-7684com. Epub 2007 Mar 14.


Serine threonine kinase Akt, also called PKB (protein kinase B), plays a central role in regulating intracellular survival. Deregulation of this Akt signaling pathway underlies various human neoplastic diseases. Recently, the proto-oncogene TCL1 (T cell leukemia 1), with a previously unknown physiological function, was shown to interact with the Akt pleckstrin homology domain, enhancing Akt kinase activity; hence, it functions as an Akt kinase coactivator. In contrast to pathological conditions in which the TCL1 gene is highly activated in various human neoplasmic diseases, the physiological expression of TCL1 is tightly limited to early developmental cells as well as various developmental stages of immune cells. The NBRE (nerve growth factor-responsive element) of the proximal TCL1 promoter sequences can regulate the restricted physiological expression of TCL1 in a negative feedback mechanism. Further, based on the NMR structural studies of Akt-TCL1 protein complexes, an inhibitory peptide, "Akt-in," consisting of the betaA strand of TCL1, has been identified and has therapeutic potential. This review article summarizes and discusses recent advances in the understanding of TCL1-Akt functional interaction in order to clarify the biological action of the proto-oncogene TCL1 family and the development avenues for a suppressive drug specific for Akt, a core intracellular survival regulator.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Humans
  • Leukemia, Prolymphocytic / genetics*
  • Models, Molecular
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Molecular Weight
  • Multigene Family
  • Protein Conformation
  • Protein Isoforms / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / chemistry
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / genetics*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt / genetics
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt / metabolism*


  • Protein Isoforms
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • TCL1A protein, human
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt