SHIP1 Is Present but Strongly Downregulated in T-ALL, and after Restoration Suppresses Leukemia Growth in a T-ALL Xenotransplantation Mouse Model


Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is the most common cause of cancer-related death in children. Despite significantly increased chances of cure, especially for high-risk ALL patients, it still represents a poor prognosis for a substantial fraction of patients. Misregulated proteins in central switching points of the cellular signaling pathways represent potentially important therapeutic targets. Recently, the inositol phosphatase SHIP1 (SH2-containing inositol 5-phosphatase) has been considered as a tumor suppressor in leukemia. SHIP1 serves as an important negative regulator of the PI3K/AKT signaling pathway, which is frequently constitutively activated in primary T-ALL. In contrast to other reports, we show for the first time that SHIP1 has not been lost in T-ALL cells, but is strongly downregulated. Reduced expression of SHIP1 leads to an increased activation of the PI3K/AKT signaling pathway. SHIP1-mRNA expression is frequently reduced in primary T-ALL samples, which is recapitulated by the decrease in SHIP1 expression at the protein level in seven out of eight available T-ALL patient samples. In addition, we investigated the change in the activity profile of tyrosine and serine/threonine kinases after the restoration of SHIP1 expression in Jurkat T-ALL cells. The tyrosine kinase receptor subfamilies of NTRK and PDGFR, which are upregulated in T-ALL subgroups with low SHIP1 expression, are significantly disabled after SHIP1 reconstitution. Lentiviral-mediated reconstitution of SHIP1 expression in Jurkat cells points to a decreased cellular proliferation upon transplantation into NSG mice in comparison to the control cohort. Together, our findings will help to elucidate the complex network of cell signaling proteins, further support a functional role for SHIP1 as tumor suppressor in T-ALL and, much more importantly, show that full-length SHIP1 is expressed in T-ALL samples.

Bibliographical data

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 06.07.2023
PubMed 37443832