A PI3K p110β-Rac signalling loop mediates Pten-loss-induced perturbation of haematopoiesis and leukaemogenesis

Nat Commun. 2015 Oct 7:6:8501. doi: 10.1038/ncomms9501.


The tumour suppressor PTEN, which antagonizes PI3K signalling, is frequently inactivated in haematologic malignancies. In mice, deletion of PTEN in haematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) causes perturbed haematopoiesis, myeloproliferative neoplasia (MPN) and leukaemia. Although the roles of the PI3K isoforms have been studied in PTEN-deficient tumours, their individual roles in PTEN-deficient HSCs are unknown. Here we show that when we delete PTEN in HSCs using the Mx1-Cre system, p110β ablation prevents MPN, improves HSC function and suppresses leukaemia initiation. Pharmacologic inhibition of p110β in PTEN-deficient mice recapitulates these genetic findings, but suggests involvement of both Akt-dependent and -independent pathways. Further investigation reveals that a p110β-Rac signalling loop plays a critical role in PTEN-deficient HSCs. Together, these data suggest that myeloid neoplasia driven by PTEN loss is dependent on p110β via p110β-Rac-positive-feedback loop, and that disruption of this loop may offer a new and effective therapeutic strategy for PTEN-deficient leukaemia.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blotting, Western
  • Bone Marrow / metabolism
  • Carcinogenesis / genetics
  • Chemotaxis
  • Class I Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / genetics*
  • Flow Cytometry
  • Hematopoiesis / genetics*
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cells / metabolism*
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Leukemia / genetics*
  • Mice
  • Myeloproliferative Disorders / genetics*
  • PTEN Phosphohydrolase / genetics*
  • rac GTP-Binding Proteins


  • 1-phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase p110 subunit, mouse
  • Class I Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • PTEN Phosphohydrolase
  • Pten protein, mouse
  • rac GTP-Binding Proteins