Constitutive phosphorylation of Janus kinase 2 in the GL15 glioblastoma derived human cell line

Miriam Sciaccaluga, Gian Luigi Gianfranceschi, Simone Rocco, Giovanni Germano, Giovanni Roti, Paolo Gorello, Roberta La Starza, Emilia Castigli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The notion that gliomas could originate from mutated glial precursor cells highlights the possibility of modulating the proliferative and migratory behaviour of glioma cells by acting on the molecular mechanisms operative during the development of the Central Nervous System (CNS), but absent in the normal adult brain. We show that the GL15 glioblastoma derived human cell line displays a high expression of nestin which, combined with the previously demonstrated high expression of vimentin, constitutes a characteristic of astrocyte restricted precursors. We also show that, in analogy with some leukaemia cells, GL15 cells display the constitutively phosphorylated form of Janus kinase 2 (JAK2), a tyrosine kinase expressed during CNS development but undetectable in the normal adult brain. The constitutive activation of JAK2 does not result from chromosomal aberrations involving the JAK2 gene, but most probably from abnormally activated transduction systems operative in glioblastoma cells. We then investigated the effects of tyrphostin AG490, an inhibitor of JAK2 autophosphorylation, on GL15 cell growth. In the absence of exogenous growth factors and cytokines, 10 μM tyrphostin AG490 induces an S phase arrest, combined with a partial impairment of the G2 phase of the cell cycle. The abnormally activated JAK2 could then potentially represent a target for a selective pharmacological approach in glioblastoma cells in which a combination of glial precursor characteristics and genetic alterations occurs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)17-23
Number of pages7
JournalOncology Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2007


  • Glioblastoma
  • Janus kinase 2
  • Tyrphostin AG490

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Oncology


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