High frequency of PTEN, PI3K, and AKT abnormalities in T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia

Blood. 2009 Jul 16;114(3):647-50. doi: 10.1182/blood-2009-02-206722. Epub 2009 May 20.


To more comprehensively assess the pathogenic contribution of the PTEN-PI3K-AKT pathway to T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL), we examined diagnostic DNA samples from children with T-ALL using array comparative genomic hybridization and sequence analysis. Alterations of PTEN, PI3K, or AKT were identified in 47.7% of 44 cases. There was a striking clustering of PTEN mutations in exon 7 in 12 cases, all of which were predicted to truncate the C2 domain without disrupting the phosphatase domain of PTEN. Induction chemotherapy failed to induce remission in 3 of the 4 patients whose lymphoblasts harbored PTEN deletions at the time of diagnosis, compared with none of the 12 patients with mutations of PTEN exon 7 (P = .007), suggesting that PTEN deletion has more adverse therapeutic consequences than mutational disruptions that preserve the phosphatase domain. These findings add significant support to the rationale for the development of therapies targeting the PTEN-PI3K-AKT pathway in T-ALL.

MeSH terms

  • Child
  • Comparative Genomic Hybridization
  • Drug Resistance, Neoplasm / genetics
  • Humans
  • Mutation*
  • PTEN Phosphohydrolase / genetics*
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / genetics*
  • Precursor T-Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma / genetics*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt / genetics*
  • Signal Transduction


  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt
  • PTEN Phosphohydrolase
  • PTEN protein, human