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Devarajan Karunagaran

Bio: Devarajan Karunagaran is an academic researcher from Indian Institute of Technology Madras. The author has contributed to research in topics: Apoptosis & microRNA. The author has an hindex of 40, co-authored 98 publications receiving 6181 citations. Previous affiliations of Devarajan Karunagaran include Indian Institutes of Technology & Weizmann Institute of Science.


Papers
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TL;DR: The observed superior ability of ErbB-2 to form heterodimers, in conjunction with its uniquely high basal tyrosine kinase activity, may explain why Erb B-2 overexpression is associated with poor prognosis.
Abstract: The ErbB family includes four homologous transmembrane tyrosine kinases. Whereas ErbB-1 binds to the epidermal growth factor (EGF), both ErbB-3 and ErbB-4 bind to the Neu differentiation factors (NDFs, or neuregulins), and ErbB-2, the most oncogenic family member, is an orphan receptor whose function is still unknown. Because previous lines of evidence indicated the existence of interreceptor interactions, we used ectopic expression of individual ErbB proteins and their combinations to analyze the details of receptor cross talks. We show that 8 of 10 possible homo-and heterodimeric complexes of ErbB proteins can be hierarchically induced by ligand binding. Although ErbB-2 binds neither ligand, even in a heterodimeric receptor complex, it is the preferred heterodimer partner of the three other members, and it favors interaction with ErbB-3. Selective receptor overexpression in human tumor cells appears to bias the hierarchical relationships. The ordered network is reflected in receptor transphosphorylation, ErbB-2-mediated enhancement of ligand affinities, and remarkable potentiation of mitogenesis by a coexpressed ErbB-2. The observed superior ability of ErbB-2 to form heterodimers, in conjunction with its uniquely high basal tyrosine kinase activity, may explain why ErbB-2 overexpression is associated with poor prognosis.

1,047 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The results imply that ErbB‐2 is a pan‐ErbB subunit of the high affinity heterodimeric receptors for NDF and EGF, which may be due to its ability to potentiate in trans growth factor signaling.
Abstract: Overexpression of the erbB-2 gene contributes to aggressive behavior of various human adenocarcinomas, including breast cancer, through an unknown molecular mechanism. The erbB-2-encoded protein is a member of the ErbB family of growth factor receptors, but no direct ligand of ErbB-2 has been reported. We show that in various cells ErbB-2 can form heterodimers with both EGF receptor (ErbB-1) and NDF receptors (ErbB-3 and ErbB-4), suggesting that it may affect the action of heterologous ligands without the involvement of a direct ErbB-2 ligand. This possibility was addressed in breast cancer cells through either overexpression of ErbB-2 or by blocking its delivery to the cell surface by means of an endoplasmic reticulum-trapped antibody. We report that ErbB-2 overexpression enhanced binding affinities to both EGF and NDF, through deceleration of ligand dissociation rates. Likewise, removal of ErbB-2 from the cell surface almost completely abolished ligand binding by accelerating dissociation of both growth factors. The kinetic effects resulted in enhancement and prolongation of the stimulation of two major cytoplasmic signaling pathways, namely: MAP kinase (ERK) and c-Jun kinase (SAPK), by either ligand. Our results imply that ErbB-2 is a pan-ErbB subunit of the high affinity heterodimeric receptors for NDF and EGF. Therefore, the oncogenic action of ErbB-2 in human cancers may be due to its ability to potentiate in trans growth factor signaling.

703 citations

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TL;DR: The results demonstrate that quercetin suppressed the viability of HeLa cells in a dose-dependent manner by inducing G2/M phase cell cycle arrest and mitochondrial apoptosis through a p53-dependent mechanism.

350 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the authors constructed soluble chimeric proteins between alkaline phosphatase and the extracellular domains of ErbB-2 and either Erb-3 or Erbb-4, two newly recognized members of the epidermal growth factor receptor family.

284 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This review describes the mechanisms of curcumin-induced apoptosis currently known, and suggests several potential strategies that include down-regulation of antiapoptotic proteins by antisense oligonucleotides, use of proAPoptotic peptides and combination therapy, and other novel approaches against chemoresistant tumors.
Abstract: Curcumin (diferuloyl methane), the yellow pigment in turmeric (Curcuma longa), is a potent chemopreventive agent that inhibits proliferation of cancer cells by arresting them at various phases of the cell cycle depending upon the cell type. Curcumin-induced apoptosis mainly involves the mitochondria-mediated pathway in various cancer cells of different tissues of origin. In some cell types like thymocytes, curcumin induces apoptosis-like changes whereas in many other normal and primary cells curcumin is either inactive or inhibits proliferation, but does not appear to induce apoptosis. These together with reports that curcumin protects cells against apoptosis induced by other agents, underscore the need for further understanding of the multiple mechanisms of cell death unleashed by curcumin. Tumor cells often evade apoptosis by expressing several antiapoptotic proteins, down-regulation and mutation of proapoptotic genes and alterations in signaling pathways that give them survival advantage and thereby allow them to resist therapy-induced apoptosis. Many researchers including ourselves, have demonstrated the involvement of several pro and antiapoptotic molecules in curcumin-induced apoptosis, and ways to sensitize chemoresistant cancer cells to curcumin treatment. This review describes the mechanisms of curcumin-induced apoptosis currently known, and suggests several potential strategies that include down-regulation of antiapoptotic proteins by antisense oligonucleotides, use of proapoptotic peptides and combination therapy, and other novel approaches against chemoresistant tumors. Several factors including pharmacological safety, scope for improvement of structure and function of curcumin and its ability to attack multiple targets are in favor of curcumin being developed as a drug for prevention and therapy of various cancers.

257 citations


Cited by
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TL;DR: When epidermal growth factor and its relatives bind the ErbB family of receptors, they trigger a rich network of signalling pathways, culminating in responses ranging from cell division to death, motility to adhesion.
Abstract: When epidermal growth factor and its relatives bind the ErbB family of receptors, they trigger a rich network of signalling pathways, culminating in responses ranging from cell division to death, motility to adhesion. The network is often dysregulated in cancer and lends credence to the mantra that molecular understanding yields clinical benefit: over 25,000 women with breast cancer have now been treated with trastuzumab (Herceptin), a recombinant antibody designed to block the receptor ErbB2. Likewise, small-molecule enzyme inhibitors and monoclonal antibodies to ErbB1 are in advanced phases of clinical testing. What can this pathway teach us about translating basic science into clinical use?

6,462 citations

Journal Article
TL;DR: In this paper, the coding exons of the family of 518 protein kinases were sequenced in 210 cancers of diverse histological types to explore the nature of the information that will be derived from cancer genome sequencing.
Abstract: AACR Centennial Conference: Translational Cancer Medicine-- Nov 4-8, 2007; Singapore PL02-05 All cancers are due to abnormalities in DNA. The availability of the human genome sequence has led to the proposal that resequencing of cancer genomes will reveal the full complement of somatic mutations and hence all the cancer genes. To explore the nature of the information that will be derived from cancer genome sequencing we have sequenced the coding exons of the family of 518 protein kinases, ~1.3Mb DNA per cancer sample, in 210 cancers of diverse histological types. Despite the screen being directed toward the coding regions of a gene family that has previously been strongly implicated in oncogenesis, the results indicate that the majority of somatic mutations detected are “passengers”. There is considerable variation in the number and pattern of these mutations between individual cancers, indicating substantial diversity of processes of molecular evolution between cancers. The imprints of exogenous mutagenic exposures, mutagenic treatment regimes and DNA repair defects can all be seen in the distinctive mutational signatures of individual cancers. This systematic mutation screen and others have previously yielded a number of cancer genes that are frequently mutated in one or more cancer types and which are now anticancer drug targets (for example BRAF , PIK3CA , and EGFR ). However, detailed analyses of the data from our screen additionally suggest that there exist a large number of additional “driver” mutations which are distributed across a substantial number of genes. It therefore appears that cells may be able to utilise mutations in a large repertoire of potential cancer genes to acquire the neoplastic phenotype. However, many of these genes are employed only infrequently. These findings may have implications for future anticancer drug development.

2,737 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: The role of ErbB receptors as normal signal transducers and their contribution to the process of malignant transformation during tumor development are concentrated on.
Abstract: Cells are continuously exposed to diverse stimuli ranging from soluble endocrine and paracrine factors, to signaling molecules on neighboring cells. It is of great importance that these extracellular signals are correctly interpreted by the cell, in order to achieve an appropriate developmental or proliferative response. Receptors of the tyrosine kinase family play pivotal roles in this process. By binding to specific peptide ligands they are able to integrate these external stimuli with internal signal transduction pathways, contributing in this fashion to the ability of the cell to respond correctly to its environment. In this review, we will concentrate on the role of ErbB receptors as normal signal transducers and their contribution to the process of malignant transformation during tumor development. ErbB proteins belong to subclass I of the superfamily of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs). There are four members of the ErbB family: epidermal growth factor (EGF) receptor (also termed ErbB1/HER1), ErbB2/Neu/HER2, ErbB3/HER3 and ErbB4/HER4. We will refer to them, henceforth, as the ErbB receptors. All family members have in common an extracellular ligand‐binding domain, a single membrane‐spanning region and a cytoplasmic protein tyrosine kinase domain. A family of ligands, the EGF‐related peptide growth factors, bind the extracellular domain of ErbB receptors leading to the formation of both homo‐ and heterodimers. Dimerization consequently stimulates the intrinsic tyrosine kinase activity of the receptors and triggers autophosphorylation of specific tyrosine residues within the cytoplasmic domain. These phosphorylated residues serve as docking sites for signaling molecules involved in the regulation of intracellular signaling cascades. Ultimately, downstream effects on gene expression determine the biological response to receptor activation. ErbB receptors are expressed in a variety of tissues of epithelial, mesenchymal and neuronal origin, where they play fundamental roles in development, proliferation and differentiation. Moreover, deregulated expression of ErbB receptors, in particular ErbB1 and ErbB2, has …

2,497 citations

Journal Article
TL;DR: Evidence has also been presented to suggest that curcumin can suppress tumor initiation, promotion and metastasis, and Pharmacologically,Curcumin has been found to be safe.
Abstract: Curcumin (diferuloylmethane) is a polyphenol derived from the plant Curcuma longa, commonly called turmeric. Extensive research over the last 50 years has indicated this polyphenol can both prevent and treat cancer. The anticancer potential of curcumin stems from its ability to suppress proliferation of a wide variety of tumor cells, down-regulate transcription factors NF- κB, AP-1 and Egr-1; down-regulate the expression of COX2, LOX, NOS, MMP-9, uPA, TNF, chemokines, cell surface adhesion molecules and cyclin D1; down-regulate growth factor receptors (such as EGFR and HER2); and inhibit the activity of c-Jun N-terminal kinase, protein tyrosine kinases and protein serine/threonine kinases. In several systems, curcumin has been described as a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent. Evidence has also been presented to suggest that curcumin can suppress tumor initiation, promotion and metastasis. Pharmacologically, curcumin has been found to be safe. Human clinical trials indicated no dose-limiting toxicity when administered at doses up to 10 g/day. All of these studies suggest that curcumin has enormous potential in the prevention and therapy of cancer. The current review describes in detail the data supporting these studies. Curcumin, derived from turmeric (vernacular name: Haldi), is a rhizome of the plant Curcuma longa. The medicinal use of this plant has been documented in Ayurveda (the Indian

2,453 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: It is useful to envision ERBB signalling as a bow-tie-configured, evolvable network, which shares modularity, redundancy and control circuits with robust biological and engineered systems.
Abstract: Signalling through the ERBB/HER receptors is intricately involved in human cancer and already serves as a target for several cancer drugs. Because of its inherent complexity, it is useful to envision ERBB signalling as a bow-tie-configured, evolvable network, which shares modularity, redundancy and control circuits with robust biological and engineered systems. Because network fragility is an inevitable trade-off of robustness, systems-level understanding is expected to generate therapeutic opportunities to intercept aberrant network activation.

1,907 citations