Sci. Signal., 27 November 2012
Cancer Help for Starving Cells
Paula A. Kiberstis
Science, AAAS, Washington, DC 20005, USA
As tumors grow larger, individual tumor cells respond to the dwindling supply of nutrients by changing the way they produce energy. The enzyme pyruvate kinase isoform M2 (PKM2) is an important component of this "metabolic reprogramming." In a study aimed at identifying how PKM2 is regulated, Keller et al. found that a cellular metabolite called SAICAR stimulates PKM2 activity and promotes cancer cell survival when glucose is limited. SAICAR is an intermediate in the pathway for de novo biosynthesis of nucleotides and its interaction with PKM2 may help cells coordinate their mode of energy generation with nutrient conditions.
Citation: P. A. Kiberstis, Help for Starving Cells. Sci. Signal. 5, ec306 (2012).
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