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      Death-associated protein kinase is essential for the survival of various types of uterine cancer cells.

      International Journal of Oncology

      Adenocarcinoma, enzymology, pathology, Apoptosis, Apoptosis Regulatory Proteins, metabolism, Calcium-Calmodulin-Dependent Protein Kinases, Carcinosarcoma, Cell Survival, Death-Associated Protein Kinases, Female, HeLa Cells, Humans, Leiomyosarcoma, RNA Interference, Transfection, Uterine Neoplasms

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          We recently showed that targeted knockdown of death-associated protein kinase (DAPK) expression induces apoptosis in the human endometrial adenocarcinoma cell line HHUA. To investigate the possibility that DAPK may represent a molecular target for anticancer therapies for advanced uterine cancers, we examined the effects of DAPK siRNA transfections on the viability of five different human uterine cancer cell lines. The five uterine cell lines comprised three differentiated endometrial adenocarcinomas, one leiomyosarcoma and one carcinosarcoma. Cell death assays showed that the DAPK siRNA transfection significantly increased the cell death in all five uterine cancer cells examined. Ribonuclease protection assays did not show any remarkable changes in the bcl-2 family gene expressions after the DAPK siRNA transfection in HHUA cells. Since DAPK-mutant mice were reported to be fertile and do not show lethality, DAPK may play a central role in the immortalization and carcinogenesis of uterine cancer cells, possibly without bcl-2 family-related apoptotic regulation. These results indicate that DAPK can be a convincing candidate for molecularly targeted anticancer therapies for patients with various types of advanced uterine cancers, including carcinosarcoma and leiomyosarcoma.

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