Taran Gujral, Ph.D.
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Funded in Partnership with the American Lung Association of the Mountain Pacific
Genetic Mutation Could Help Predict Response to Lung Cancer Chemotherapy
Serine/threonine kinase 11 (STK11) ranks among the most frequently mutated genes in lung cancer. However, there is no therapy approved that specifically targets this mutation. We have found that STK11 mutations play a role in response to the chemotherapy drug gemcitabine. The status of these mutations might be used to predict patients' response to treatment. We will validate the role of STK11 mutations in the response to gemcitabine in lung cancer cell lines and a STK11-deficient mouse model. We hope the findings will accelerate development of a therapeutic option for many lung cancer patients and establish STK11 mutations as predictive markers for response to chemotherapy, a finding which could have an immediate clinical utility.