Novel roles of PRK1 and PRK2 in cilia and cancer biology

Hitesh Patel, Jun Li, Ana Herrero, Jakob Kroboth, Adam Byron, Alex von Kriegsheim, Valerie G. Brunton, Neil O. Carragher, Toby Hurd, Margaret C. Frame

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


PRK1 and PRK2 are two closely related AGC-family serine/threonine protein kinases. Here we demonstrate novel roles for them at cilia and in cancer biology. In both instances serum withdrawal leads to increased activating PRK1 and PRK2 phosphorylation (pPRK1/pPRK2) and their depletion results in reduced spheroid growth. pPRK1/pPRK2 localise to the transition zone of cilia and their co-depletion results in reduced cilia size, impaired planer polarity and impaired cilia associated signalling. High PRK2 (but not PRK1) expression correlates with poor outcome in patients with basal-like/Triple Negative (TN) Breast Cancer (BC) where there is also higher expression relative to other BC tumour subtypes. In agreement, depletion of PRK1 and PRK2 in mouse TNBC cells, or CRISPR/Cas9 mediated deletion of PRK2 alone, significantly reduces cell proliferation and spheroid growth. Finally proteomic analysis to identify PRK2 binding partners in mouse TNBC cells revealed proteins that are important for both cilia and BC biology. Taken together these data demonstrate novel roles for PRK1 and PRK2 at cilia and in BC biology and in the case of PRK2 in particular, identifies it as a novel TNBC therapeutic target.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3902
Pages (from-to)1-12
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2020


  • breast cancer
  • cell polarity


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