Research Papers: Gerotarget (Focus on Aging):

The underlying mechanism of proinflammatory NF-κB activation by the mTORC2/Akt/IKKα pathway during skin aging

Yeon Ja Choi, Kyoung Mi Moon, Ki Wung Chung, Ji Won Jeong, Daeui Park, Dae Hyun Kim, Byung Pal Yu and Hae Young Chung _

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:52685-52694. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.10943

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Yeon Ja Choi1, Kyoung Mi Moon1, Ki Wung Chung1, Ji Won Jeong1, Daeui Park1,2,3, Dae Hyun Kim1, Byung Pal Yu4 and Hae Young Chung1

1 Molecular Inflammation Research Center for Aging Intervention, College of Pharmacy, Pusan National University, Busan, Korea

2 Department of Predictive Toxicology, Korea Institute of Toxicology, Daejeon, Korea

3 Human and Environmental Toxicology, School of Engineering, University of Science and Technology, Daejeon, Korea

4 Department of Physiology, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas, United States of America

Correspondence to:

Hae Young Chung, email:

Keywords: skin aging, mTORC2, NF-κB, UV, Gerotarget

Received: November 20, 2015 Accepted: July 23, 2016 Published: July 29, 2016


Mammalian target of rapamycin complex 2 (mTORC2), one of two different enzymatic complexes of mTOR, regulates a diverse set of substrates including Akt. mTOR pathway is one of well-known mediators of aging process, however, its role in skin aging has not been determined. Skin aging can be induced by physical age and ultraviolet (UV) irradiation which are intrinsic and extrinsic factors, respectively. Here, we report increased mTORC2 pathway in intrinsic and photo-induced skin aging, which is implicated in the activation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB). UVB-irradiated or aged mice skin revealed that mTORC2 activity and its component, rictor were significantly upregulated which in turn increased Akt activation and Akt-dependent IκB kinase α (IKKα) phosphorylation at Thr23 in vivo. We also confirmed that UVB induced the mTORC2/Akt/IKKα signaling pathway with HaCaT human normal keratinocytes. The increased mTORC2 signaling pathway during skin aging were associated to NF-κB activation. Suppression of mTORC2 activity by the treatment of a mTOR small inhibitor or knockdown of RICTOR partially rescued UVB-induced NF-κB activation through the downregulation of Akt/IKKα activity. Our data demonstrated the upregulation of mTORC2 pathway in intrinsic and photo-induced skin aging and its role in IKKα/NF-κB activation. These data not only expanded the functions of mTOR to skin aging but also revealed the therapeutic potential of inhibiting mTORC2 in ameliorating both intrinsic skin aging and photoaging.

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