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Cancer Lett. 2002 Mar 8;177(1):95-100.

MMP-7 (matrilysin) accelerated growth of human umbilical vein endothelial cells.

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Department of Surgery-2, Yokohama City University School of Medicine, 3-9 Fukuura kanazawa-ku, Yokohama 236-0004, Japan.


Matrix metalloproteinases (MMP) are considered to play important roles in angiogenesis. In angiogenic processes, endothelial cells secrete MMP-2 or MMP-1 to dissolve the basement membrane or connective tissue around the vessels. MMP-7 (matrilysin) is secreted from the neovasculars induced by cancer and is a metastatic factor of colorectal cancer. The effect of matrilysin on angiogenesis is still unclear, however. We therefore examined the effect of MMP-7 on the proliferation of human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) in vitro. Our results showed that recombinant MMP-7 (rMMP-7) accelerated the proliferation of endothelial cells dose-dependently, and did so for endothelial cells cultured not only on type IV collagen, but also on type I collagen. MMP-7 also upregulated MMP-1, -2 secretion, but did not stimulate vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) secretion. From this study, we conclude that MMP-7 directly induces angiogenesis, and that therefore MMP-7 would be a good target of cancer therapy.

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