PIK3CA mutations in mucinous cystic neoplasms of the pancreas

Dario Garcia-Carracedo, Zong Ming Chen, Wanglong Qiu, Alicia S. Huang, Sophia M. Tang, Ralph H. Hruban, Gloria H. Su

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


OBJECTIVES: Mucinous cystic neoplasms (MCNs) are rare, potentially curable, mucin-producing neoplasms of the pancreas. We have previously reported PIK3CA (phosphoinositide-3-kinase catalytic subunit, p110α) mutations in intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms, another mucin-producing neoplasm of the pancreas. In this study, we analyzed the presence of PIK3CA and AKT1/PKB (V-akt murine thymoma viral oncogene homolog 1) hot-spot mutations in MCN specimens. METHODS: Using the genomic DNA sequencing of tumor tissues isolated by laser capture microdissection, we evaluated 15 well-characterized MCNs for the E542K, E545K (exon 9), and H1047R (exon 20) hot-spot mutations in the PIK3CA gene and the E17K mutation in the AKT1 gene. RESULTS: A hot-spot mutation (E545K) of the PIK3CA gene was detected in 1 of the 15 MCNs and further confirmed by a mutant-enriched method. Interestingly, this mutation was found to be present only in the high-grade but not in low-grade dysplastic epithelium obtained from this neoplasm and coexisted with a KRAS mutation. No mutations were identified in the AKT1 gene. CONCLUSIONS: Our data, when combined with previous reports on intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasms, indicate that oncogenic activation of the PI3K pathway involving PIK3CA gene mutations can contribute to the progression of mucin-producing neoplasms but not pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia. PIK3CA status could be useful for understanding their progression to malignancy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)245-249
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2014


  • PIK3CA, AKT1
  • mucinous cystic neoplasm
  • oncogene
  • somatic mutations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Internal Medicine
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Hepatology
  • Endocrinology

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