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Marazioti, Antonia; Lilis, Ioannis; Vreka, Malamati; Apostolopoulou, Hara; Kalogeropoulou, Argyro; Giopanou, Ioanna; Giotopoulou, Georgia A.; Krontira, Anthi C.; Iliopoulou, Marianthi; Kanellakis, Nikolaos I.; Agalioti, Theodora; Giannou, Anastasios D.; Jones-Paris, Celestial; Iwakura, Yoichiro; Kardamakis, Dimitrios; Blackwell, Timothy S.; Taraviras, Stavros; Spella, Magda and Stathopoulos, Georgios T. (2018): Myeloid-derived interleukin-1 beta drives oncogenic KRAS-NF-kappa Beta addiction in malignant pleural effusion. In: Nature Communications, Vol. 9, 672 [PDF, 4MB]


Malignant pleural effusion (MPE) is a frequent metastatic manifestation of human cancers. While we previously identified KRAS mutations as molecular culprits of MPE formation, the underlying mechanism remained unknown. Here, we determine that non-canonical IKK alpha-RelB pathway activation of KRAS-mutant tumor cells mediates MPE development and this is fueled by host-provided interleukin IL-1 beta. Indeed, IKK alpha is required for the MPE-competence of KRAS-mutant tumor cells by activating non-canonical NF-kappa B signaling. IL-1 beta fuels addiction of mutant KRAS to IKK alpha resulting in increased CXCL1 secretion that fosters MPE-associated inflammation. Importantly, IL-1 beta-mediated NF-kappa B induction in KRAS-mutant tumor cells, as well as their resulting MPE-competence, can only be blocked by co-inhibition of both KRAS and IKK alpha, a strategy that overcomes drug resistance to individual treatments. Hence we show that mutant KRAS facilitates IKK alpha-mediated responsiveness of tumor cells to host IL-1 beta, thereby establishing a host-to-tumor signaling circuit that culminates in inflammatory MPE development and drug resistance.

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