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Nat Rev Cancer. 2013 Sep;13(9):637-51. doi: 10.1038/nrc3546. Epub 2013 Jul 25.

Endothelin 1 in cancer: biological implications and therapeutic opportunities.

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Laboratory of Molecular Pathology A, Regina Elena National Cancer Institute, Via Elio Chianesi 53, Rome 00144, Italy.


Activation of autocrine and paracrine signalling by endothelin 1 (ET1) binding to its receptors elicits pleiotropic effects on tumour cells and on the host microenvironment. This activation modulates cell proliferation, apoptosis, migration, epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition, chemoresistance and neovascularization, thus providing a strong rationale for targeting ET1 receptors in cancer. In this Review, we discuss the advances in our understanding of the diverse biological roles of ET1 in cancer and describe the latest preclinical and clinical progress that has been made using small-molecule antagonists of ET1 receptors that inhibit ET1-driven signalling.

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