The Src family kinases (SFKs) are believed to play critical roles in malignant transformation, as well as in growth, invasion and dissemination of neoplastic tissue. Inhibition of SFK-mediated signal transduction and activation of downstream targets inhibits tumor progression. To determine whether constitutive activity of SFK per se is sufficient to induce tumorigenesis in vivo, we have generated a mouse model with a keratinocyte-restricted deletion of the SFK-negative regulator csk (Csk-K5 mice). Even though expression levels of SFKs were lower in C-terminal Src kinase (Csk)-null keratinocytes, activity levels were higher than in control keratinocytes. At the age of 3 months, all Csk-K5 mice displayed signs of chronic inflammation in dermis and epidermal hyperplasia. About 19% of Csk-K5 mice (7 out of 36) developed papillomatous lesions. However, these lesions did not show any signs of neoplastic transformation over the next 8 months. Epidermal hyperplasia and hyperkeratosis in Csk-K5 mice were associated with an increased number of stem cells in the interfollicular epidermis, an increased proliferation of basal keratinocytes and a delayed terminal differentiation of the suprabasal keratinocytes. Our results clearly demonstrate that even though SFK-mediated signaling promotes tumor progression, elevated activity of SFKs in vivo alone is not sufficient to induce neoplastic transformation.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cancer Research