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Future Oncol. 2012 Apr;8(4):431-40. doi: 10.2217/fon.12.27.

GPR56 in cancer progression: current status and future perspective.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Genetics, Department of Dermatology, James P Wilmot Cancer Center, University of Rochester Medical Center, Rochester, NY 14642, USA.


Cell adhesion is a critical process during cancer progression and is mediated by transmembrane receptors. Recently, GPR56, a member of the adhesion family of G protein-coupled receptors, was established as a new type of adhesion receptor that binds to extracellular matrix proteins and shown to play inhibitory roles in melanoma progression. Further studies revealed that the extracellular portion and the seven transmembrane domains of GPR56 function antagonistically to regulate VEGF production and angiogenesis via a signaling pathway mediated by PKCĪ±. Tissue transglutaminase was identified as the first extracellular matrix protein that binds to GPR56. It is a crosslinking enzyme in the extracellular matrix but is also expressed in the cytosol. Tissue transglutaminase plays pleiotropic roles in cancer progression. Whether and how it might mediate GPR56-regulated cancer progression awaits further investigation.

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