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Oncogene. 2000 Jul 20;19(31):3449-59.

The human myoepithelial cell displays a multifaceted anti-angiogenic phenotype.

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Division of Surgical Oncology, UCLA School of Medicine, Los Angeles, California, CA 90024, USA.


Human myoepithelial cells which surround ducts and acini of certain organs such as the breast form a natural border separating epithelial cells from stromal angiogenesis. Myoepithelial cell lines (HMS-1-6), derived from diverse benign myoepithelial tumors, all constitutively express high levels of active angiogenic inhibitors which include TIMP-1, thrombospondin-1 and soluble bFGF receptors but very low levels of angiogenic factors. These myoepithelial cell lines inhibit endothelial cell chemotaxis and proliferation. These myoepithelial cell lines sense hypoxia, respond to low O2 tension by increased HIF-1 alpha but with only a minimal increase in VEGF and iNOS steady state mRNA levels. Their corresponding xenografts (HMS-X-6X) grow very slowly compared to their non-myoepithelial carcinomatous counterparts and accumulate an abundant extracellular matrix devoid of angiogenesis but containing bound angiogenic inhibitors. These myoepithelial xenografts exhibit only minimal hypoxia but extensive necrosis in comparison to their non-myoepithelial xenograft counterparts. These former xenografts inhibit local and systemic tumor-induced angiogenesis and metastasis presumably from their matrix-bound and released circulating angiogenic inhibitors. These observations collectively support the hypothesis that the human myoepithelial cell (even when transformed) is a natural suppressor of angiogenesis. Oncogene (2000) 19, 3449 - 3459.

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