SYK Is a Critical Regulator of FLT3 in Acute Myeloid Leukemia.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Cooperative dependencies between mutant oncoproteins and wild-type proteins are critical in cancer pathogenesis and therapy resistance. Although spleen tyrosine kinase (SYK) has been implicated in hematologic malignancies, it is rarely mutated. We used kinase activity profiling to identify collaborators of SYK in acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and determined that FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) is transactivated by SYK via direct binding. Highly activated SYK is predominantly found in FLT3-ITD positive AML and cooperates with FLT3-ITD to activate MYC transcriptional programs. FLT3-ITD AML cells are more vulnerable to SYK suppression than FLT3 wild-type counterparts. In a FLT3-ITD in vivo model, SYK is indispensable for myeloproliferative disease (MPD) development, and SYK overexpression promotes overt transformation to AML and resistance to FLT3-ITD-targeted therapy.


  • Alexandre Puissant
  • Nina Fenouille
  • Gabriela Alexe
  • Yana Pikman
  • Christopher F Bassil
  • Swapnil Mehta
  • Jinyan Du
  • Julhash U. Kazi
  • Frédéric Luciano
  • Lars Rönnstrand
  • Andrew L Kung
  • Jon C Aster
  • Ilene Galinsky
  • Richard M Stone
  • Daniel J Deangelo
  • Michael T Hemann
  • Kimberly Stegmaier
External organisations
  • Harvard Medical School
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Boston University
  • Mediterranean Centre for Molecular Medicine
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cancer and Oncology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)226-242
JournalCancer Cell
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Publication categoryResearch