CCRK is a novel signalling hub exploitable in cancer immunotherapy

Mok, Myth T, Zhou, Jingying, Tang, Wenshu, Zeng, Xuezhen, Oliver, Antony W, Ward, Simon E and Cheng, Alfred S L (2018) CCRK is a novel signalling hub exploitable in cancer immunotherapy. Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 186. pp. 138-151. ISSN 0163-7258

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Cyclin-dependent kinase 20 (CDK20), or more commonly referred to as cell cycle-related kinase (CCRK), is the latest member of CDK family with strong linkage to human cancers. Accumulating studies have reported the consistent overexpression of CCRK in cancers arising from brain, colon, liver, lung and ovary. Such aberrant up-regulation of CCRK is clinically significant as it correlates with tumor staging, shorter patient survival and poor prognosis. Intriguingly, the signalling molecules perturbed by CCRK are divergent and cancer-specific, including the cell cycle regulators CDK2, cyclin D1, cyclin E and RB in glioblastoma, ovarian carcinoma and colorectal cancer, and KEAP1-NRF2 cytoprotective pathway in lung cancer. In hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), CCRK mediates virus-host interaction to promote hepatitis B virus-associated tumorigenesis. Further mechanistic analyses reveal that CCRK orchestrates a self-reinforcing circuitry comprising of AR, GSK3β, β-catenin, AKT, EZH2, and NF-κB signalling for transcriptional and epigenetic regulation of oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes. Notably, EZH2 and NF-κB in this circuit have been recently shown to induce IL-6 production to facilitate tumor immune evasion. Concordantly, in a hepatoma preclinical model, ablation of Ccrk disrupts the immunosuppressive tumor microenvironment and enhances the therapeutic efficacy of immune checkpoint blockade via potentiation of anti-tumor T cell responses. In this review, we summarized the multifaceted tumor-intrinsic and -extrinsic functions of CCRK, which represents a novel signalling hub exploitable in cancer immunotherapy.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Life Sciences > Sussex Centre for Genome Damage and Stability
Research Centres and Groups: Genome Damage and Stability Centre
Sussex Drug Discovery Centre
Subjects: Q Science
Depositing User: Antony Oliver
Date Deposited: 30 Jan 2018 10:16
Last Modified: 18 Feb 2022 16:24

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Project NameSussex Project NumberFunderFunder Ref
Structural Biology of DNA Damage Response and Repair MechanismsG2176CANCER RESEARCH UKC302/A24386