Phosphatase and tensin homolog deleted on chromosome 10 (PTEN) is a tumor suppressor and bi-functional lipid and protein phosphatase. We report that the metabolic regulator pyruvate dehydrogenase kinase1 (PDHK1) is a synthetic-essential gene in PTEN-deficient cancer and normal cells. The PTEN protein phosphatase dephosphorylates nuclear factor κB (NF-κB)-activating protein (NKAP) and limits NFκB activation to suppress expression of PDHK1, a NF-κB target gene. Loss of the PTEN protein phosphatase upregulates PDHK1 to induce aerobic glycolysis and PDHK1 cellular dependence. PTEN-deficient human tumors harbor increased PDHK1, a biomarker of decreased patient survival. This study uncovers a PTEN-regulated signaling pathway and reveals PDHK1 as a potential target in PTEN-deficient cancers.
Keywords: NF-κB; NKAP; PDHK1; PTEN; cancer; metabolism; protein phosphatase; signaling; synthetic lethality.
Copyright © 2019 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.