Research ArticleCancer

Vitamin E Facilitates the Inactivation of the Kinase Akt by the Phosphatase PHLPP1

Science Signaling  19 Mar 2013:
Vol. 6, Issue 267, pp. ra19
DOI: 10.1126/scisignal.2003816

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Suppressing Cancer Growth with Vitamin E

Vitamin E has well-known health benefits, including an anticancer effect. Tocopherols, a dietary form of vitamin E, induce the dephosphorylation of the kinase Akt, thereby inhibiting Akt-mediated signals that promote cell metabolism, proliferation, and motility. Huang et al. found that tocopherols, which integrate into cell membranes, stimulated a site-specific dephosphorylation of Akt by recruiting both Akt and the phosphatase PHLPP1 to the cell membrane through their respective pleckstrin homology (PH) domains. Tocopherol-derived synthetic compounds showed more potent effects than natural tocopherols in mediating this inactivation of Akt and reducing the growth of xenograft prostate tumors in mice, indicating potential for drug development.