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J Biochem. 2013 Nov;154(5):395-408. doi: 10.1093/jb/mvt085. Epub 2013 Oct 3.

Deregulation of hyaluronan synthesis, degradation and binding promotes breast cancer.

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Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research, Science for Life Laboratory, Uppsala University, Biomedical Center, Box 595, SE-75124 Uppsala, Sweden.


Clinical and experimental data indicate that hyaluronan accumulates in breast cancer compared with normal breast epithelium, which correlates to poor prognosis. In this review, we discuss the expression of genes encoding enzymes that synthesize or degrade hyaluronan, i.e. hyaluronan synthases and hyaluronidases or bind hyaluronan, i.e. CD44 and receptor for hyaluronan-mediated motility (RHAMM, also designated as HMMR or CD168), in relation to breast cancer progression. Hyaluronan and hyaluronan receptors have multi-faceted roles in signalling events in breast cancer. A better understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying these signalling pathways is highly warranted and may lead to improvement of cancer treatment.


CD44; breast cancer; hyaluronan; hyaluronan synthases

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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