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Cooperation between Pik3ca and p53 mutations in mouse mammary tumor formation.

PIK3CA, which codes for the p110α catalytic subunit of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase, is one of the most frequently mutated genes in human breast cancer. Here, we describe a mouse model for PIK3CA-induced breast cancer by using the ROSA26 (R26) knock-in system, in which targeted Pik3ca alleles can be activated through transgenic expression of Cre recombinase. We mated Pik3ca(H1047R) and Pik3ca(wt) knock-in lines with MMTV-Cre transgenics, which express Cre in mammary epithelium. Starting at approximately 5 months of age, female R26-Pik3ca(H1047R);MMTV-Cre mice, but not control R26-Pik3ca(wt);MMTV-Cre mice, developed mammary tumors, as well as lymphoid and skin malignancies. R26-Pik3ca(H1047R);MMTV-Cre mammary tumors were typically either adenosquamous carcinoma or adenomyoepithelioma. As p53 is the most commonly mutated gene in breast cancer, we tested for genetic interaction between Pik3ca(H1047R) and p53 loss-of-function mutations in R26-Pik3ca(H1047R);p53(loxP/+);MMTV-Cre mice. This led to decreased survival of double-mutant animals, which developed lymphoma and mammary tumors with rapid kinetics. Mammary tumors that formed in p53(loxP/+);MMTV-Cre conditional mutants were either poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma or spindle cell/EMT, whereas R26-Pik3ca(H1047R);p53(loxP/+);MMTV-Cre mammary tumors were mostly adenosquamous carcinoma or spindle cell/EMT indicating that double-mutant mice develop a distinct spectrum of mammary tumors. Thus, an oncogenic variant of PIK3CA implicated in multiple human breast cancer subtypes can induce a very diverse spectrum of mammary tumors in mice. Furthermore, Pik3ca(H1047R) shows cooperation with p53, which altered the specific tumors that formed. Thus, the two most frequently mutated genes in human breast cancer show cooperation in mammary tumor formation.

Pubmed ID: 21324922


  • Adams JR
  • Xu K
  • Liu JC
  • Agamez NM
  • Loch AJ
  • Wong RG
  • Wang W
  • Wright KL
  • Lane TF
  • Zacksenhaus E
  • Egan SE


Cancer research

Publication Data

April 1, 2011

Associated Grants


Mesh Terms

  • Alleles
  • Animals
  • Female
  • Gene Knock-In Techniques
  • Mammary Neoplasms, Experimental
  • Mice
  • Mice, Transgenic
  • Mutation
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt
  • Tumor Suppressor Protein p53