mTOR promotes pituitary tumor development through activation of PTTG1

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As one of the most common intracranial tumors, pituitary tumor is associated with high morbidity. Effective therapy is currently not available for some pituitary tumors due to the largely undefined pathological processes of pituitary tumorigenesis. In this study, hyperactivation of mammalian/mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) signaling was observed in estrogen-induced rat pituitary tumor and mTOR inhibitor rapamycin blocked the tumor development. Pituitary knockout of either mTOR signaling pathway negative regulator Tsc1 or Pten caused mouse pituitary prolactinoma, which was abolished by rapamycin treatment. Mechanistically, the expression of pituitary tumor transforming gene 1 (PTTG1) was upregulated in an mTOR complex 1-dependent manner. Overexpressed PTTG1 was crucial in hyperactive mTOR-mediated tumorigenesis. mTOR-PTTG1 signaling axis may be targeted for the treatment of tumors with mTOR hyperactivation.

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