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Biochemistry. 2003 May 13;42(18):5414-20.

Tumor-associated trypsinogen-2 (trypsinogen-2) activates procollagenases (MMP-1, -8, -13) and stromelysin-1 (MMP-3) and degrades type I collagen.

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Department of Diagnostics and Oral Medicine, Institute of Dentistry, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland.


A critical step in cancer growth and metastasis is the dissolution of the extracellular matrix surrounding the malignant tumor, which leads to tumor cell invasion and dissemination. Type I collagen degradation involves the initial action of collagenolytic matrix metalloproteinases (MMP-1, -8, and -13) activated by MMP-3 (stromelysin-1). The role of interactive matrix serine proteinases (MSPs), including tumor-associated trypsinogens, has been unclear in collagenolysis. Now, we provide evidence that the major isoenzyme of human tumor-associated trypsinogens, trypsin-2, can directly activate three collagenolytic proMMPs as well as proMMP-3. These proMMP activations are inhibited by tumor-associated trypsin inhibitor (TATI). Furthermore, we demonstrate that trypsin-2 efficiently degrades native soluble type I collagen, which can be inhibited by TATI. However, cell culture studies showed that trypsin-2 transfection into the HSC-3 cell line did not result in MMP-1, -3, -8, and -13 activation but affected MMP-3 and -8 production at the protein level. These findings indicate that human trypsin-2 can be regarded as a potent tumor-associated matrix serine protease capable of being the initial activator of the collagenolytic MMP activation network as well as directly attacking type I collagen.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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