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BioMed Research International
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 2476842, 8 pages
Research Article

PTEN Inhibits Cell Proliferation, Promotes Cell Apoptosis, and Induces Cell Cycle Arrest via Downregulating the PI3K/AKT/hTERT Pathway in Lung Adenocarcinoma A549 Cells

1Department of Geriatrics, Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, Changsha, Hunan 410008, China
2Department of Respiratory Medicine, Xiangya Hospital of Central South University, Changsha, Hunan 410008, China

Received 27 June 2016; Revised 12 September 2016; Accepted 20 September 2016

Academic Editor: Manoor Prakash Hande

Copyright © 2016 Xiao-Xiao Lu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


PTEN plays an essential role in tumorigenesis and both its mutation and inactivation can influence proliferation, apoptosis, and cell cycle progression in tumor cells. However, the precise role of PTEN in lung cancer cells has not been well studied. To address this, we have generated lung adenocarcinoma A549 cells overexpressing wild-type or mutant PTEN as well as A549 cells expressing a siRNA directed toward endogenous PTEN. Overexpression of wild-type PTEN profoundly inhibited cell proliferation, promoted cell apoptosis, caused cell cycle arrest at G1, downregulated p-AKT, and decreased expression of the telomerase protein hTERT. In contrast, in cells expressing a PTEN directed siRNA, the opposite effects on cell proliferation, apoptosis, cell cycle arrest, p-AKT levels, and hTERT protein expression were observed. A549 cells transfected with a PTEN mutant lacking phosphatase activity (PTEN-C124A) or an empty vector (null) did not show any effect. Furthermore, using the PI3K/AKT pathway blocker LY294002, we confirmed that the PI3K/AKT pathway was involved in mediating these effects of PTEN. Taken together, we have demonstrated that PTEN downregulates the PI3K/AKT/hTERT pathway, thereby suppressing the growth of lung adenocarcinoma cells. Our study may provide evidence for a promising therapeutic target for the treatment of lung adenocarcinoma.