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Neoplasia. 2007 Apr;9(4):279-91.

Signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 activation promotes invasive growth of colon carcinomas through matrix metalloproteinase induction.

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  • 1Institute of Biochemistry I, Friedrich-Schiller University Jena Medical School, Jena, Germany.


Signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) is aberrantly activated in colorectal carcinomas (CRCs). Here, we define the relationship between STAT3 function and the malignant properties of colon carcinoma cells. Elevated activation of STAT3 enhances invasive growth of the CRC cell lines. To address mechanisms through which STAT3 influences invasiveness, the protease mRNA expression pattern of CRC biopsies was analyzed and correlated with the STAT3 activity status. These studies revealed a striking coincidence of STAT3 activation and strong expression of matrix metalloproteinases MMP-1, -3, -7, and -9. Immunohistological examination of CRC tumor specimens showed a clear colocalization of MMP-1 and activated STAT3. Experimentally induced STAT3 activity in CRC cell lines enhanced both the level of MMP-1 mRNA and secreted MMP-1 enzymatic activity. A direct connection of STAT3 activity and transcription from the MMP-1 promoter was shown by reporter gene experiments. Moreover, high-affinity binding of STAT3 to STAT recognition elements in both the MMP-1 and MMP-3 promoter was demonstrated. Xenograft tumors arising from implantation of CRC cells into nude mice showed simultaneous appearance and colocalization of p-Y-STAT3 and MMP-1 expression. Our results link aberrant activity of STAT3 in CRC to malignant tumor progression through upregulated expression of MMPs.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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