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Cancer Res. 2008 Jun 15;68(12):4736-45. doi: 10.1158/0008-5472.CAN-07-6612.

Tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase 3 suppresses tumor angiogenesis in matrix metalloproteinase 2-down-regulated lung cancer.

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Program of Cancer Biology, Department of Cancer Biology and Pharmacology, University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria, Peoria, Illinois, USA.


Matrix metalloproteinase-2 (MMP-2) expression is often up-regulated in advanced cancers and known to play an important role in tumor angiogenesis. We previously showed that adenoviral-mediated delivery of siRNA for MMP-2 (Ad-MMP-2-Si) inhibited lung cancer growth, angiogenesis, and metastasis. In this study, we investigated the signaling mechanisms involved in Ad-MMP-2-Si-mediated inhibition of angiogenesis. Ad-MMP-2-Si treatment inhibited neovascularization in vivo as determined by mouse dorsal air sac model, and conditioned medium from Ad-MMP-2-Si-infected A549 lung cancer cells (Ad-MMP-2-Si-CM) inhibited endothelial tube formation in vitro. Ad-MMP-2-Si-CM decreased proliferation as determined by Ki-67 immunofluorescence and induced apoptosis in endothelial cells as determined by terminal deoxynucleotidyl-transferase-mediated dUTP nick-end labeling (TUNEL) assay. Furthermore, Ad-MMP-2-Si-CM inhibited AKT phosphorylation and induced phosphorylation of extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK)/mitogen-activated protein kinase in endothelial cells. Overexpression of constitutively active AKT reversed the Ad-MMP-2-Si-CM-mediated inhibition of tube formation and induction of ERK phosphorylation. Conversely, Ad-MMP-2-Si-CM induced tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP) 3 expression, and the interaction of vascular endothelial growth factor 2 and TIMP-3 was determined by coimmunoprecipitation experiments. TIMP-3 induction was mediated by ERK activation. In addition, electrophoretic mobility shift and chromatin immunoprecipitation assays show that Sp1 transcription factor mediated Ad-MMP-2-Si-CM-stimulated increase of TIMP-3. Vasculature destruction was confirmed with colocalization studies with TUNEL and an endothelial marker, CD31, in tumor sections of Ad-MMP-2-Si-treated mice. Our data collectively suggest that MMP-2 inhibition induces endothelial apoptosis in vivo and inhibits endothelial tube formation. These experiments provide the first evidence that inhibition of p-AKT and induction of p-ERK1/2 are crucial events in the induction of TIMP-3-mediated endothelial apoptosis in MMP-2 inhibited lung tumors.

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