The tumor suppressor PTEN is a putative negative regulator of the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase/Akt pathway. Exposure to Zn 2؉ ions induces Akt activation, suggesting that PTEN may be modulated in this process. Therefore, the effects of Zn 2؉ on PTEN were studied in human airway epithelial cells and rat lungs. Treatment with Zn 2؉ resulted in a significant reduction in levels of PTEN protein in a dose-and time-dependent fashion in a human airway epithelial cell line. This effect of Zn 2؉ was also observed in …
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