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Br J Cancer. 2006 Mar 13;94(5):724-30.

Expression of a disintegrin and metalloprotease (ADAM and ADAMTS) enzymes in human non-small-cell lung carcinomas (NSCLC).

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Laboratory of Pneumology, Center for Biomedical Integrative Genoproteomics (CBIG), University of Liège and Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Liège (CHU-Liège), Avenue de l'Hôpital, CHU Sart-Tilman, Liège 4000, Belgium.


A Disintegrin and Metalloprotease (ADAM) are transmembrane proteases displaying multiple functions. ADAM with ThromboSpondin-like motifs (ADAMTS) are secreted proteases characterised by thrombospondin (TS) motifs in their C-terminal domain. The aim of this work was to evaluate the expression pattern of ADAMs and ADAMTS in non small cell lung carcinomas (NSCLC) and to investigate the possible correlation between their expression and cancer progression. Reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR), Western blot and immunohistochemical analyses were performed on NSCLC samples and corresponding nondiseased tissue fragments. Among the ADAMs evaluated (ADAM-8, -9, -10, -12, -15, -17, ADAMTS-1, TS-2 and TS-12), a modulation of ADAM-12 and ADAMTS-1 mRNA expression was observed. Amounts of ADAM-12 mRNA transcripts were increased in tumour tissues as compared to the corresponding controls. In sharp contrast, ADAMTS-1 mRNA levels were significantly lower in tumour tissues when compared to corresponding nondiseased lung. These results were corroborated at the protein level by Western blot and immunohistochemistry. A positive correlation was observed between the mRNA levels of ADAM-12 and those of two vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)-A isoforms (VEGF-A(165) and VEGF-A(121)). Taken together, these results providing evidence for an overexpression of ADAM-12 and a lower expression of ADAMTS-1 in non-small-cell lung cancer suggest that these proteases play different functions in cancer progression.

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