Pancreatic cancer remains one of the most difficult malignancies to treat. Minimal improvements in patient outcomes and persistently abysmal patient survival rates underscore the great need for new treatment strategies. Currently, there is intense interest in therapeutic strategies that target tyrosine protein kinases. Here, we employed kinome arrays and bioinformatic pipelines capable of identifying differentially active protein tyrosine kinases in different patient-derived pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) cell lines and wild-type pancreatic tissue to investigate the unique kinomic networks of PDAC samples and posit novel target kinases for pancreatic cancer therapy. Consistent with previously described reports, the resultant peptide-based kinome array profiles identified increased protein tyrosine kinase activity in pancreatic cancer for the following kinases: epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), fms related receptor tyrosine kinase 4/vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 3 (FLT4/VEGFR-3), insulin receptor (INSR), ephrin receptor A2 (EPHA2), platelet derived growth factor receptor alpha (PDGFRA), SRC proto-oncogene kinase (SRC), and tyrosine kinase non receptor 2 (TNK2). Furthermore, this study identified increased activity for protein tyrosine kinases with limited prior evidence of differential activity in pancreatic cancer. These protein tyrosine kinases include B lymphoid kinase (BLK), Fyn-related kinase (FRK), Lck/Yes-related novel kinase (LYN), FYN proto-oncogene kinase (FYN), lymphocyte cell-specific kinase (LCK), tec protein kinase (TEC), hemopoietic cell kinase (HCK), ABL proto-oncogene 2 kinase (ABL2), discoidin domain receptor 1 kinase (DDR1), and ephrin receptor A8 kinase (EPHA8). Together, these results support the utility of peptide array kinomic analyses in the generation of potential candidate kinases for future pancreatic cancer therapeutic development.
Keywords: cancer metabolism; desmoplasia; fibrosis; inflammation; kinase inhibitors; kinase signatures; kinomic networks; pancreatic cancer; peptide array; transcription factors.