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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Growth factor-induced cell motility in tumor invasion.

Tumor progression to the invasive and metastatic states dramatically enhances the morbidity and mortality of cancer. Rational therapeutic interventions will only be possible when we understand the molecular mechanisms governing the cell behavior underlying this transformation. For invasion, a subpopulation of tumor cells must recognize the extracellular matrix barrier, modify the barrier, migrate through the barrier, and then proliferate in the adjacent but ectopic locale. Prevention of any one of these steps would prevent invasion, but determining the most sensitively dysregulated step should provide the most promising therapeutic index. In many invasive tumors, upregulation of active motility is stimulated by growth factor receptor signaling, the EGF receptor being the most frequently implicated. Two key downstream molecular switches, PLCgamma and m-calpain, are required for growth factor-induced motility but not basal, matrix-stimulated motility. Inhibition of either of these enzymes blocks in vitro and in vivo invasion of prostate, breast, and bladder carcinomas and glioblastomas. These represent novel and potentially selective targets for drug development. Future advances in the imaging of tumors in animals and ex vivo organ culture systems should provide additional new targets.[1]


  1. Growth factor-induced cell motility in tumor invasion. Wells, A., Kassis, J., Solava, J., Turner, T., Lauffenburger, D.A. Acta oncologica (Stockholm, Sweden) (2002) [Pubmed]
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