Purpose: GSK3β is a protein kinase that can suppress a number of key oncoproteins. We have previously shown in preclinical models of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) that inhibition of GSK3β causes stabilization and nuclear translocation of b-catenin, poor differentiation, proliferation, and resistance to radiation. The objective of this study was to determine its utility as a biomarker of clinical outcomes. Experimental Design: Automated Quantitative Immunofluorescence Analysis (AQUA) of GSK3β was performed on a tissue microarray with samples from 163 patients treated on RTOG 9704. On the basis of findings in an exploratory cohort, GSK3β was analyzed as a categorical variable using its upper quartile (<Q3) as a cut point. Overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) were estimated with the Kaplan-Meier method, and GSK3β groupings were compared using the log-rank test. Univariable and multivariable Cox proportional hazards models were used to determine associations between GSK3β and OS/DFS. Results: The 3-year OS rates for GSK3β≥Q3 versus GSK3β <Q3 were 16% (95% confidence intervals; CI, 10%-23%) and 30% (95% CI, 17%-44%), respectively, P = 0.0082. The 3-year DFS rates were 9% (95% CI, 5%-15%) and 20% (95% CI, 9%-33%) respectively, P value = 0.0081. On multivariable analysis, GSK3β was a significant predictor of OS. Patients with GSK3β <Q3 had a 46% reduced risk of dying of pancreatic cancer (HR, 0.54; 95% CI, 0.31-0.96, P value = 0.034). The HR for DFS was 0.65 (95% CI, 0.39-1.07; P value = 0.092). Conclusions: GSK3β expression is a strong prognosticator in PDAC, independent of other known factors such as tumor (T) stage, nodal status, surgical margins and CA19-9.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research