Oncogenic KRAS Regulates Tumor Cell Signaling via Stromal Reciprocation

Christopher J. Tape, Stephanie Ling, Maria Dimitriadi, Kelly M. McMahon, Jonathan D. Worboys, Hui Sun Leong, Ida C. Norrie, Crispin J. Miller, George Poulogiannis, Douglas A. Lauffenburger, Claus Jørgensen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

151 Citations (Scopus)
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Oncogenic mutations regulate signaling within both tumor cells and adjacent stromal cells. Here, we show that oncogenic KRAS (KRAS(G12D)) also regulates tumor cell signaling via stromal cells. By combining cell-specific proteome labeling with multivariate phosphoproteomics, we analyzed heterocellular KRAS(G12D) signaling in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDA) cells. Tumor cell KRAS(G12D) engages heterotypic fibroblasts, which subsequently instigate reciprocal signaling in the tumor cells. Reciprocal signaling employs additional kinases and doubles the number of regulated signaling nodes from cell-autonomous KRAS(G12D). Consequently, reciprocal KRAS(G12D) produces a tumor cell phosphoproteome and total proteome that is distinct from cell-autonomous KRAS(G12D) alone. Reciprocal signaling regulates tumor cell proliferation and apoptosis and increases mitochondrial capacity via an IGF1R/AXL-AKT axis. These results demonstrate that oncogene signaling should be viewed as a heterocellular process and that our existing cell-autonomous perspective underrepresents the extent of oncogene signaling in cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)910-920
Number of pages11
Issue number4
Early online date14 Apr 2016
Publication statusPublished - 5 May 2016


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